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Last Updated: Monday, 27 October, 2003, 13:10 GMT
Timeline: Duncan Smith's leadership
BBC News Online charts the major events of Iain Duncan Smith's leadership of the Conservative Party to date.

13 September 2001 - Iain Duncan Smith wins leadership contest, beating off Ken Clarke in a vote of all party members.

10 October 2001 - Mr Duncan Smith outlines his determination to "bring first class public services to our people" in his first Conservative conference speech as leader.

16 October 2001 - Tory peer and historian Lord Skidelsky resigns from the party, saying it is increasingly "hysterical" Europhobia.

22 November 2001 - In what is seen as an important shift for the party, shadow chancellor Michael Howard promises to put improving schools and hospitals before tax cuts.

17 December 2001 - The Tory leader says he is "not overconfident" at this stage of winning the next election.

28 February 2002 - Shadow cabinet minister David Willetts begins a series of "One Nation hearings" by spending a night on a Birmingham council estate.

24 March 2002 - Mr Duncan Smith tells the party's Spring forum in Harrogate "a nation that leaves its vulnerable behind diminishes its own future".

2 May 2002 - The Tories make modest gains at the local elections, making a net gain of nine councils and getting a Conservative elected mayor of North Tyneside.

5 May 2002 - Shadow rural affairs minister Ann Winterton is sacked for making a racist joke.

16 May 2002 - Four Tory MPs defy a three line whip to support plans to allow unmarried couples to adopt children

5 June 2002 - Conservative strategy director Dominic Cummings is quoted as saying "the only thing less popular than the euro is the Tory party" amid reports that anti-euro campaigners do not want the Tories to play a big role in their campaigns.

23 July 2002 - David Davis is sacked as party chairman while he is on holiday abroad and replaced by Theresa May

18 August 2002 - Lord Tebbit urges Mr Duncan Smith to sack the "squabbling children" from the party headquarters, warning that "spotty youths, researchers, assistants and party apparatchiks" were undermining him.

13 September 2002 - On his first anniversary as leader, Mr Duncan Smith says there are "five giants" of our time that need to be defeated: failing schools, crime, sub-standard healthcare, child poverty and insecurity in old age.

7 October 2002: Party chairman Theresa May tells the Tory conference that the Conservatives are seen as the "nasty party".

10 October 2002 - Mr Duncan Smith uses his speech to the conference, where 25 policies are unveiled, to warn: "Do not underestimate the determination of a quiet man."

4 November 2002 - John Bercow resigns from the Shadow Cabinet as MPs vote on adoption by gay and unmarried couples.

5 November 2002: Amid continued rumours of plots, Mr Duncan Smith tells his party that it has to "unite or die".

18 December 2002 - A BBC Newsnight report questions Mr Duncan Smith's entry in Who's Who, claiming he attended the Universita per Stranieri rather than the Universita di Perugia, and that his attendance at the Dunchurch College of Management was nothing more than a few short courses at the former staff college of his former employer, GEC Marconi.

14 February 2003 - Barry Legg, former Tory MP from the right wing of the party, announced as replacing moderniser Mark MacGregor as Conservative chief executive. Sparks renewed round of in-fighting between rival factions.

21 February 2003 - Michael Portillo says the latest crisis is "manufactured at the centre" and says Mrs May's position as party chairman is now untenable.

1 May 2003 - Crispin Blunt resigns from the frontbench and demands a no confidence motion in Duncan Smith.

2 May 2003: The party wins hundreds of council seats in the local council elections.

7 May 2003 - Barry Legg resigns as Tory chief executive and chief of staff amid continued controversy over his appointment.

13 May 2003 - Launch of the "Fair Deal for Everyone" campaign, including the pledge to scrap university tuition fees.

10 July 2003 - Mr Duncan Smith launches a "big fight back" against the growth of a European super state, but says he is committed to a "progressive" EU.

11 September 2003: The Tory leader pans Labour's "command state" approach.

4 October 2003: A Tory government would tax less, says Mr Duncan Smith. But conference policy messages, including plans to boost pensions, is overshadowed by reports of plots and opinion polls criticising his leadership.

9 October 2003: Mr Duncan Smith uses his conference speech to say the "quiet man is turning up the volume" and says his critics should "get on board" or get out of the way.

12 October 2003: The Tory leadership hails a YouGov poll, based on an internet panel, showing the party five points ahead as a big turnaround from the 20 points deficit seen at the beginning of Mr Duncan Smith's time in office.

13 October 2003: Parliament's watchdog begins an inquiry about Mr Duncan Smith's past employment of his wife as his diary secretary. But the Tory leader says he will be proved innocent and accuses "cowards in the shadows" of trying to attack him through his wife.

18 October 2003: Senior Tory MP Sir Patrick Cormack urges Mr Duncan Smith to call a vote of confidence in his own leadership.

22 October 2003: Major Tory donor Stuart Wheeler says there is an "overwhelming case" to replace Mr Duncan Smith. The Tory leader discusses how to deal with plotters with his chief whip and senior officials and tells his shadow cabinet he will lead them into the next election.

27 October 2003: Mr Duncan Smith meets small groups of Tory MPs to gauge their support as former whip Derek Conway formally requests a confidence vote.

28 October 2003: Mr Duncan Smith says he will fight for his leadership after Sir Michael Spicer, chairman of the backbench 1922 comittee, receives at least 25 letters asking for a vote of confidence.




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