Remain MP Dominic Grieve suffers no confidence vote

The former attorney general was one of the MPs behind the cross-party move to seize control of House of Commons business to stage a series of indicative votes on alternatives to Theresa May’s deal.

He backs a second referendum and last week said Mrs May’s attack on parliament for blocking her Brexit deal left him “never more ashamed to be Conservative”, adding: “I could have wept.”

The chairman of the Beaconsfield Constituency Conservative Association, Jackson Ng, said the no confidence motion was passed at the association’s annual general meeting on Friday evening.

He tweeted: “Our members had a robust discussion with our MP, Dominic Grieve QC on Brexit before voting on a motion of confidence in him as our MP, which, I can confirm with a heavy heart that he failed to retain.

“He remains our Conservative MP but I will be speaking as soon as possible to my fellow officers and the executive council.”

The campaign against Mr Grieve is reported to have been organised by Jon Conway, the former UKIP candidate who stood against him in the 2017 general election.

Sky News’ political editor Faisal Islam points out Mr Conway, who has described himself as a “pantomime producer”, had also been chairman of the local UKIP branch and stood for a seat on the party’s national executive.

The no confidence vote, passed by 182 to 131 votes, paves the way for the association’s executive council to decide if Mr Grieve will have to take part in a new candidate selection for the safe Tory seat.

However, regardless of the outcome he will remain an MP until the next election unless he decides to quit first.

Mr Grieve has not yet commented on his defeat, but a source close to the MP said it was “not unexpected”, adding that his Beaconsfield association had seen an influx of “200 new members in 12 months”.

MPs from across the political divide have rallied to his support.

His pro-Brexit constituency neighbour Boris Johnson tweeted: “Sad to hear about Dominic Grieve. We disagree about EU but he is a good man and a true Conservative #grieveforbeaconsfield.”

Former chancellor George Osborne has called on Conservative head office to intervene and suspend the local party.

“Otherwise we are heading for a huge, historic split in the Tory Party,” he warned in a tweet.

Former Tory MP Anna Soubry, who was also at the forefront of the Remain wing of the Conservative Party until she defected to join the Independent Group, branded the vote “disgraceful”.

She tweeted: “More evidence that the uncompromising dogmatic right is running the @Conservatives #DominicGrieve is one of the finest, most courageous Parliamentarians ever – who has always put his country first & championed all his constituents.”

Senior Tory backbencher Tom Tugendhat, chairman of the Commons foreign affairs committee, said it was “deeply disappointing”.

He tweeted: “Few in Parliament have contributed as much to public life as Dominic Grieve. As attorney general and chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee he has served our country dutifully for decades. He deserves thanks and praise, not this. Our party and country would be poorer.”

Several Labour MPs also voiced support for Mr Grieve.

Stella Creasy said the country’s politics “would be poorer without his input”.

She said: “I’m in a different political party to Dominic. We disagree on many things. I doubt Beaconsfield conservatives could find someone more experienced, more capable and more principled than him for their MP.”

Phil Wilson said the vote was “ridiculous”, adding: “I’m not of the same politics as Dominic Grieve but to deselect him as a Conservative candidate is to diminish politics, see an end to political integrity and deprive politics of a sincere and thoughtful practitioner.”

However, Brexiteer businessman Arron Banks, who founded the Leave.EU campaign group, welcomed the vote against Mr Grieve.

Mr Banks tweeted: “He’s done everything he could to undermine and defeat Brexit. Good.”

2019-03-30T12:28:07+00:00By |

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