Operation Get George: 57 MPs in revolt at Osborne’s Brexit budget warning

Written by David Singleton on 15 June 2016 in Diary

Letter states: ‘If he were to proceed with these proposals, the Chancellor's position would become untenable.’

Scores of disgruntled Conservative MPs have signed a letter pledging to block George Osborne’s proposed emergency Brexit budget.

In one of his starkest anti-Brexit warnings yet, the chancellor warned he would be forced to introduce £30bn of tax rises and spending cuts to fill the "black hole" created by quitting the European Union.

But 57 furious Tory MPs - including former cabinet ministers Iain Duncan Smith and Owen Paterson - condemned the chancellor for threatening to renege on Tory manifesto commitments on the public finances.

In a serious challenge to Osborne’s authority, the 57 said in a statement: “It is absurd to say that if people vote to take back control from the EU that he would want to punish them in this way.

"We do not believe that he would find it possible to get support in Parliament for these proposals to cut the NHS, our police forces and our schools.

"If the Chancellor is serious then we cannot possibly allow this to go ahead. It would be unnecessary, wrong and a rejection of the platform on which we all stood. If he were to proceed with these proposals, the Chancellor's position would become untenable.

"This is a blatant attempt to talk down the market and the country. The Chancellor risks doing damage to the British economy in his bid to win this political campaign."

Vote Leave chief executive Matthew Elliot said: “George Osborne’s reckless teenage temper tantrum has proved a step too far. Threatening to vandalise the economy has led to his MPs effectively declaring no confidence in him.”

And backbencher Stewart Jackson even took to Twitter to openly declare that Osborne would be ousted from Number 11 if the UK backs Brexit.




Speaking on the Today programme after the letter emerged, Osborne defended his warning of spending cuts and tax rises, saying Brexit would bring with it "chaos" in the UK's public finances.

"Let’s be clear, no Conservative wants to raise taxes, least of all me. But equally Conservatives understand and indeed I suspect many Labour politicians understand, that you cannot have chaos in your public finances," he told the Today programme.

"You have to deal with the hole that would emerge if we quit the EU and we would have to take the necessary measures."

The MPs who have signed the statement are:

1.            Iain Duncan Smith

2.            Liam Fox

3.            Cheryl Gillan

4.            David Jones

5.            Owen Paterson

6.            John Redwood

7.            Sir Gerald Howarth

8.            Tim Loughton

9.            Crispin Blunt

10.          Sir William Cash

11.          Bernard Jenkin

12.          Julian Lewis

13.          Adam Afriyie

14.          Nigel Adams

15.          Lucy Allan

16.          Steve Baker

17.          Bob Blackman

18.          Peter Bone

19.          Andrew Bridgen

20.          David Burrowes

21.          Maria Caulfield

22.          Christopher Chope

23.          Chris Davies

24.          Philip Davies

25.          David TC Davies

26.          Nadine Dorries

27.          Steve Double

28.          Richard Drax

29.          Nigel Evans

30.          Michael Fabricant

31.          Marcus Fysh

32.          Chris Green

33.          Rebecca Harris

34.          Gordon Henderson

35.          Philip Hollobone

36.          Adam Holloway

37.          Kwasi Kwarteng

38.          Jonathan Lord

39.          Craig Mackinlay

40.          Anne Main

41.          Karl McCartney

42.          Nigel Mills

43.          Anne Marie Morris

44.          Sheryl Murray

45.          David Nuttall

46.          Matthew Offord

47.          Andrew Percy

48.          Tom Pursglove

49.          Jacob Rees-Mogg

50.          Andrew Rosindell

51.          Henry Smith

52.          Derek Thomas

53.          Anne Marie Trevelyan

54.          Martin Vickers

55.          David Warburton

56.          Bill Wiggin

57.          William Wragg

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