Chief whip misses the memo as top Tories try to play the unity card

Written by David Singleton on 30 January 2019 in Diary

Conservative MPs have united around a plan that EU leaders have no interest in agreeing to…

A few months after using his speech at Conservative conference to make a wierd attack on the EU, Jeremy Hunt is trying a different tactic for winning over Tory members.

“We have shown tonight as a party that we can and will come together in the national interest,” he insisted at the Tory Reform Group reception on Tuesday evening.

Similarly, Boris Johnson told Newsnight that last night’s vote for Graham Brady’s amendment was a proper show of unity: “My party, after months and months and months of rancor and division, came together. At the risk of being sentimental, it was great to see.”

More bizarrely, top Tory Remainer Nicky Morgan and Brexit hardliner Steve Baker have done their bit with a joint op-ed in the Daily Telegraph.

Alas Tory chief whip Julian Smith slightly undermined the belated attempt to pretend that everybody is playing nicely when he was spotted trying to intimidate Justine Greening into backing the Brady amendment.

By all accounts, he later issued a “grovelling apology”....




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