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Rory Stewart resigns Conservative whip and will not seek re-election

October 4, 2019 10:10 AM

Rory Stewart Resigns

Rory Stewart, MP for Penrith and the Border has today resigned the Conservative whip and will not stand in the coming General election.

Rory, who has been MP for Penrith and the Border for 10 years, said "It's been a great privilege to serve Penrith and The Border for the last ten years, so it is with sadness that I am announcing that I will be standing down at the next election and that I have also resigned from the Conservative Party."

Mr Stewart stood for election as Conservative party leader in June / July 2019 and was the only candidate who was forthright on the complexities of Brexit. One of the 21 Conservative MP's who rebelled and voted for the Benn-Burt Act to ensure that the government could not force no-deal and would need to seek an extension by 19th October, Rory had the whip withdrawn by Boris Johnson and Dominic Cummings in an act that also ended the Conservative career of the Grandson of Winston Churchill Nicolas Soames. Since then he has sat in Parliament as an independent.

Rory Stewart Resigns - Carlisle Lib Dems (Crown Copyright)

Our Carlisle Lib Dem candidate, Julia Aglionby, has worked closely with Rory on farming and environmental issues over the last nine years. On Friday's News Julia says;

"While my political views vary from Rory's his departure from Parliamentary politics is perhaps one of the starkest indicators that the very brightest minds at the centre of British politics do not feel they can make a difference. Rory, a decent man of the highest intellect, has been ejected from the Conservative party when he still has 25+ years to give. I wish Rory well and he has a young family to nurture as well as his career." "What concerns me is his departure indicates about current times. Parliamentary democracy depends on people being willing to stand for parliament. It is very worrying that our pool of potential politicians standing for common sense, decency and moderation may be reduced. This climate of high stakes and emotive language is not what Britain and Cumbria need. We require sound economic policies that protect our jobs, improve our services, provide high-quality homes and food. In parallel to all of this we urgently need to address the climate emergency. These are complex issues that three word one syllable populist mantras, however often repeated, will not resolve."

The fate of Tories such as Rory should act as a wake-up call to moderate "One Nation Tories" throughout our region. By voting for Lib Dem candidates Julia Aglionby (Carlisle) and Matthew Severn (Penrith) our county and region can send a message loud and clear to Westminister that we've had enough of their division and that we #demandbetter .

Learn more about Julia Aglionby.