Confidential Briefing Silences Potential Tory Critics

Wednesday 10th December 1936

Behind the Scenes

The King was going and Baldwin had told the country  why, but there would still have to at least the formality of a debate in Parliament as the abdication bill was passed. Downing Street decided that stern measures would be needed to draw the teeth of the most significant source of potential trouble, a couple of dozen right-wing Conservative MPs, who were openly critical of the government's handling of the crisis. Their leaders were summoned to Downing Street and given a confidential briefing, which almost certainly made plain the fact that the government had available to it material deeply discreditable to Mrs. Simpson. They left with their enthusiasm for continuing the fight on Edward's behalf dimmed to disappearance.