Conservative Sir Nicholas Soames, the grandson of famed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill explains that he has voted against his party just three times in his 37-year political career, but he felt compelled to defect and vote against Tory Prime Minister Boris Johnson this week when he cast his ballot with 21 other Tory MPs to defeat the government.
The Washington Post is reporting that the lifelong Conservative representing Mid-Sussex voted against Boris Johnson for a motion that will likely cause Brexit to be delayed until 2020. Just hours after the vote, a spokesperson for 10 Downing Street (the pm's residence) said Conservative MPs who did not support the prime minister "will have the Tory whip removed," meaning that they would not be allowed to stand as Conservative representatives in Parliament going forward. The loss of these 21 Tory MPs means that Johnson no longer has the majority on his side.
Soames, 71, shared a statement to say that he knew what he was doing, but "that's fortunes of war."
"I have been told by the chief whip … that it will be his sad duty to write me tomorrow to tell me that I have had the whip removed."Churchill's grandson explains that he doesn't intend to run again for his seat in the coming general election. Soames' expulsion is the height of irony as Johnson has shared his admiration for Winston Churchill on a number of occasions throughout his life in politics, calling him "the greatest statesman that Britain had ever produced."
The 71-year-old politician believes that sadly, this is what Johnson has planned all along.
"It is a pity — a great pity — that this has in my view all been planned. This is exactly what they wanted, and they will try to have a general election, which is what they wanted."A feeling of shock in being expressed among British politicians who can't imagine that a politician like Soames is being cast out of the party.
Ruth Davidson, who resigned as leader of the Scottish Conservative Party last week, posted on Twitter her shock at Soames' expulsion.
"How, in the name of all that is good and holy, is there no longer room in the Conservative Party for @NSoames?"CNN confirmed on Wednesday morning that Soames, as well as 20 other Conservative MPs, have been summarily "sacked" by Boris Johnson as a result of voting against his mission to leave the European Union on October 31 with or without a deal.