Sources revealed that Mrs May will duck out after delivering Brexit and hopes to influence who succeeds her. The two senior figures suspect the resignation after the PM dropped them subtle hints, The Sun has been told. It is thought Mrs May’s chosen departure will give her the power to have some say over who the new Conservative leader will be.
The plan is to spark a new Tory leadership contest which will end at the party’s annual conference in October.
International Trade Secretary Liam Fox is one of Mrs May’s senior ministers who has received the hints.
A senior Tory MP told The Sun: “Liam is convinced she’ll go this summer. He says everything the PM has told hm suggests that.
“She’s determined to ensure the right person follows her, and she’ll have no say at all if it gets to the stage of forcing her out.”
The Business Secretary, Greg Clark, has reportedly told friends he expects her to voluntarily leave the position this year.
Allies of his have pointed out that Mrs May has not expressed interest in creating a post-Brexit agenda for the next two years.
Since she has announced she will not fight in the 2022 general election as a Conservative leader, she must find a successor by 2021 at the latest.
However another close ally of Mrs May’s has insisted she has not shown any private indication of abandoning her post.
The source told The Sun: “The only person who will know Theresa’s real thinking on when she’ll step down is her husband, Philip.
“She won’t share it with anyone else, not us or any Cabinet minister.”
Many Tory MPs have agreed Mrs May should leave post-Brexit.
One Tory MP said last night: “Everybody wants her to get Brexit over the line, which will be a substantial legacy, but then that will be it.
“There’s a big feeling now that she has run out of road. All her capital is burnt, both here and in Brussels, and someone else needs to pick up the reins from there with a new mandate.”