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Thursday, 22 February 2007

Sir Patrick Cormack deselection

A correspondent has drawn my attention to the story in the Telegraph about the deselection of Sir Patrick Cormack, MP for South Stafforshire. He is a widely respected parliamentarian who was first elected in 1970 and won his seat at the last election with a 9.4% swing to the Conservatives - the largest in the country. Phil Woolas, the local government minister, said:
"This is an outrage. If there's no room for people like Sir Patrick in the modern Conservative Party, then Middle England really should be worried"
There is more information at the blog of Oliver Kamm: Tory ructions.

Sir Patrick is an independent minded "one nation" Tory who was a frequent rebel under Margaret Thatcher and under John Major voted against his party in a 1992 division condemning action in Bosnia as "too little, too late."

He will now have to win the support of the local party in a secret ballot. He has indicated that if he loses, he will stand as an independent candidate. Martin Bell has indicated that he will support him in this eventuality.

Why do I care? He has consistently voted pro-life over the years and I wonder whether his deselection has anything to do with this in the new climate of "modern conservatism." Here is a link to his voting record on various matters of interest.

Here is a link to Ian Dale's diary which is running a Save Sir Patrick Campaign
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