Brexit rebels stripped of Tory whip claim they ‘CAN’ stand for election as Conservatives – The Sun

BREXIT rebel MPs expelled by Boris Johnson say they have received new legal advice that will allow them to stand for election as Conservatives again.

The 21 MPs were stripped of the Tory whip for backing a bid to delay Brexit under No Deal in a key vote two weeks ago.

The PM branded it a confidence vote in his Government.

But the legal advice, drawn up pro-bono by a QC for the group, states that the landmark Commons showdown was not a confidence matter – signalling the prospect of an embarrassing u-turn ebing enforced on Mr Johnson.

One of the rebels planning to appeal said: “Our legal advice says a confidence vote is one in which the Government falls if it’s lost.

“That manifestly didn’t happen, so Boris is on very shaky grounds for what he’s done.”

REBELS READY TO APPEAL

Five of the rebel group so far are planning to lodge an appeal, which will be heard by a three-strong panel convened by the 1922 Committee.

But The Sun has also learned that a larger number also remain livid with Boris and will refuse to lodge an appeal.

Those insisting it’s for the PM instead to ask them back include Rory Stewart, Sir Nicholas Soames and Margot James.

Ex-Cabinet minister Mr Stewart said on his decision not to appeal last night: “I’m not sure many people would want a job back if they had to force people to take you back – reluctantly on their part – and then try to work with them again.

“It would feel like trying to force a partner to stay with you who had already said they didn’t want you.

“You’d have to believe the partner had completely changed their mind, and I would find that difficult to believe.”

The first letters asking for hearing under Tory party rules first drawn up in 2006 have already arrived with 1922 chair Sir Graham Brady.

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Sir Graham has told the MPs he wants the hearings to be heard “sooner rather than later,” to give local Tory associations surety ahead of the imminent general election.

Boris is refusing to reverse his ban, despite repeated pleas from Cabinet ministers, including Commons Leader Jacob Rees-Mogg this week.

As many as 12 have vowed to stand as independents in an election if the whip is not returned to them, making it harder for the Tory boss to win a majority.


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