David Blackburn

Buckingham Conservative Association Executive Committee stands behind Bercow

Buckingham Conservative Association Executive Committee stands behind Bercow
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Tim Montgomerie reports that a senior source at CCHQ has said that John Bercow will not stand as an official Conservative candidate at the general election, and therefore party members will not be required to vote for him.  

So, will they be for or against Bercow? Councillor Netta Glover, the Buckingham Association’s deputy chairman and political officer, told me that the executive committee were “standing firm behind Mr Bercow”, and that Tory party rules stated that “anyone seeking an official nomination against the speaker would be barred by the returning officer” – so de-selection can be discounted. However, and this has induced a joint migraine for Central Office and the constituency Association, Glover admitted that there were “certainly a number of people within the association and the public at large who would like to de-select him (Bercow).” How many will choose abstention over removing Bercow? Bercow enjoys a majority in excess of 18,000, but Farage’s challenge is real enough. It will be intriguing to see how the Lib Dem and Labour associations, who are not, as yet, fielding candidates, mobilise their 18,000 voters to cause maximum damage to the Tories - whoever wins, it's far from ideal for the Tory leadership.