THE Conservative Party is in the midst of a civil war as it prepares to fight three by-elections caused by the resignations of Boris Johnson and two key allies.

The former prime minister confirmed his intention to make a political comeback in comments reported by the Daily Express, in which Johnson quoted The Terminator saying: “I’ll be back”.

He is officially no longer an MP but his parting shots at Rishi Sunak have given the Prime Minister three headaches - in the form of by-elections in Johnson’s former constituency, Nadine Dorries’s Mid Bedfordshire patch and Nigel Adams’s Selby and Ainsty seat.

Johnson quit on Friday evening after he was handed a copy of an investigation which found he had misled parliament over his claims he had not broken Covid rules in Downing Street

Tensions came to a head when Sunak refused to allow Johnson to appoint Dorries to the House of Lords, amid reports many names were scored off the former prime minister’s resignation honours list.

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Tradition allows for outgoing prime ministers to ennoble their colleagues but Johnson’s list was mired in controversy and did see knighthoods handed to cronies such as Jacob Rees-Mogg and Michael Fabricant.

Dorries fired a blast at the “sinister forces” in her column for the Daily Mail, who she said worked behind the scenes to deny her a seat in the Lords.

She claimed Sunak’s political secretary, the former Spectator journalist James Forsyth, had intervened to prevent her from being elevated to the upper chamber – despite assurances from Johnson that her place was guaranteed.

She wrote: “It is my belief that when Rishi Sunak told Boris Johnson he would sign off the list returned to him by [the House of Lords Appointment Commission], he was using weasel words. He already knew who was and wasn't on that list because he had engineered it via his aide Forsyth.”

Dorries went on: “If I'm being generous and No 10's duplicitous machinations were to avoid a by-election, they should have talked to me. We could have worked together. As it is, they now have not one but three to contest.

“I have never been under any illusion that breaking through the class ceiling would be a battle.

“I was born into poverty and clawed my way out of it to build a new life for me and my family, and then carved out a role in public service. A seat in the Lords was recognition of that — and a means of continuing to give back to society.

“I'm not going to lie. I believe sinister forces conspired against me and have left me heartbroken — but that emotion gives me all the strength I need to keep on fighting.”

READ MORE: Boris Johnson quits as Tory MP after committee finds he misled parliament

It emerged over the weekend that eight of Johnson’s nominations were nixed by the House of Lords Appointments Commission, including Dories, Adams and the COP26 president Alok Sharma.

The commission said: “All nominations made by Mr Johnson were received and processed by Holac. Eight nominees were not supported by the commission.”

The Government has denied it fiddled with the list.

Sunak now faces the prospect of fighting three by-elections in seats the Conservatives are not guaranteed to keep.

The LibDems believe they can win in Mid Bedfordshire, while Labour say they stand a fighting chance in Johnson’s former west London seat.