The last few days have been rough for United Kingdom prime minister Theresa May.
The election she called for, meant to consolidate power for her conservative party ahead of Brexit negotiations, backfired and cost her side a crucial majority in parliament.
That self-inflicted blow, and the surge of the Labor party, has led to calls for her resignation. Now the Washington Post reports that some conservative politicians from her own party are using the encrypted messaging service WhatsApp to plot who will replace the embattled prime minister:
Former minister Ed Vaizey told the BBC that he supports May staying on, but that Tories were discussing possible replacements. Asked whether members were calling one another to plot May’s ouster this weekend, he denied it.
“That’s so 20th century,” he said. “It’s all on WhatsApp.”
Just think of the 21st century as a golden age of using instantaneous communication to casually chat about a move that could influence the world order. If May is replaced, her successor will have the job of negotiating the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union.
Meanwhile, this isn’t the first time members of the Tory party have used WhatsApp to privately talk about their political concerns.
In December, The Telegraph reported that Tories who wanted the UK to leave the EU, had assembled a WhatsApp group that included more than 40 conservative former and current politicians.
“As far as I’m concerned, one of the most crucial means of organising against the determined and sustained attacks by our opponents is instant rebuttal,” Steve Baker, a Tory lawmaker and group admin, told the Telegraph. “That requires instant communication, which is what we use the WhatsApp group for … It is extremely effective.”
It’s not clear if that group is the same one talking about potential replacements for May. For what it’s worth, Baker tweeted on Friday that he still supported May.