The murder of Jo Cox was a moment that leaves you numb; an MP paying the ultimate price for the open society we live in. For the fact that our representatives live and work among us.
Despite this tragedy, democracy must go on. By this time next week, the EU referendum will be over. The country will have made up its mind.
Whether it is Leave or Remain, the UK will need a period of stability. This means David Cameron staying on as Prime Minister and, as I reveal in The Sun today, plans are already well advanced to ensure that this happens.
Boris Johnson has signed a letter saying that Cameron must carry on as Prime Minister regardless of the result; making clear that he isn’t interested in any coup attempt. Michael Gove, the most senior member of the Cabinet campaigning for Leave, has done the same. Other Cabinet Brexiteers have also added their names to it.
The letter is now being circulated among Tory MPs. The organisers are confident of getting a three figure number of signatories.
The aim of the letter is to make clear as soon as the polls close that there is no chance of deposing David Cameron. The hope is that this will dissuade Tory malcontents from trying to gather the 50 names needed to trigger a vote of no confidence in Cameron among Tory MPs.
It won’t be a simple task to reunite the Tory party after this referendum. But if a challenge to Cameron can be pre-empted with the help of senior Leavers, it will be easier than it otherwise would have been.
Is Brexit happening? Spectator subscribers are invited to join James Forsyth, Isabel Hardman and Fraser Nelson to discuss the Brexit debate at 7pm on Monday, We’re delighted to say that Ben Page, chief executive of Ipsos Mori, will be around to decipher the latest opinion polls. Tickets available here.