September 04, 2019
Rory Stewart has been stripped of the Conservative whip – kicked out of the parliamentary party and is no longer allowed to represent them in parliament – after voting against the government to give power to rebel MPs to block a no-deal Brexit.
Rory Stewarts Constituents React After Whip Removed From Their MP
Stewart, who was Boris Johnson’s opponent in the Tory leadership campaign, revealed he found out he was sacked by text as he was at an awards ceremony accepting the GQ award for Politician of the Year, only hours after the vote.
The former international development secretary has criticised the sacking of MPs who voted against a no-deal Brexit and has confirmed he will not be stepping down as MP or giving up on his party or constituency. If he is not allowed to run for the Tories, he says he will stand as an independent MP at the next election.Parts of my party may be trying to give up on me. But I’m not giving up on my party. Still less my constituency. I will be back in Penrith this Friday and Saturday. Look forward to seeing you all there Rory pic.twitter.com/VGix7hBhgZ— Rory Stewart (@RoryStewartUK) September 4, 2019Strange that a decision has been made to remove the whip from so many colleagues who were ministers so recently. Particularly when we voted repeatedly for a Brexit deal. I can’t think of a historical precedent. But I am not stepping down as an MP.— Rory Stewart (@RoryStewartUK) September 3, 2019Stewart’s constituency Penrith and the Border, in Cumbria, voted to leave the EU. As Westminster reeled from an extraordinary night that saw Stewart kicked alongside 20 other Tory MPs, including two former chancellors and Winston Churchill’s grandson, HuffPost UK took to the streets of Penrith to find out how people feel about it.Katherine Dixon, 82, believes Stewart’s firing was totally justified – along with the other 20 MPs.
“I think it is absolutely right that Rory Stewart has been sacked. I think it is disgusting the way these rebel MPs have behaved.
“They should have just let Boris Johnson get on with it and get on with getting us out of Europe.
“But instead, they have taken his bargaining power away.”
Dixon, who voted Leave, says she never liked Stewart as an MP. ”I never voted for him as I thought he was soft,” she said. “He always seemed to think stupid things.
“He travelled a lot and I thought he wasn’t in touch with the real world and he didn’t realise what the people of Penrith wanted.”Phil Walters, 68, is also disappointed with Rory Stewart’s actions in recent weeks. 
“I voted for Rory Stewart last time, but I won’t vote for him again,” he said.  “He is supposed to represent his constituents but he doesn’t.
“He has not been loyal to the party that he supports and represents. I think he fully deserved to be sacked.
“By voting to ban a no-deal Brexit, he is effectively pulling the rug from underneath our negotiations with the EU.
“I voted to Leave as I have had enough of the EU. They are unelected and need to be gotten rid of.
“Rory Stewart has been disloyal. I feel it is a shame as he seemed a nice fellow apart from this. But this is unfortunately unforgivable and he has rightly been sacked.”But others are sad to see him go. Rebecca Bayliffe, 28, thinks he would have made “a really great prime minister”.
“I think Rory Stewart is really nice. I feel sad that he has been sacked,” she said.
“I really liked the way he explained things. Politicians can often be full of meaningless  jargon but he was really good and he always put things in normal people’s terms.
She said she would still vote for him if he stands as an independent candidate.
“I am a Conservative supporter but I liked the values Rory Stewart represented and the way he stood up for Cumbrian people.
“As much as we are trying to save the world, we also need to save our own heritage.”
Bayliffe was away for the EU referendum and didn’t vote, but she now thinks parliament is making it difficult.
“They are all fighting against each other. So many people in the UK are feeling unsettled and anxious about everything going on and that transcends into people’s lives which is not good.”Philip Braithwaite, 67, also likes Rory Stewart and describes him as “coming across as one of the few honest MPs.”
He says he believes parliament has turned into a real joke with people constantly trying to change the rules.
“We had the referendum. They should have put the options of leaving with a no-deal or a deal on the ballot papers at the time. You can’t just change the rules now.” he told HuffPost UK.
“It is like a football cup final. If Manchester United are beating Liverpool at the end of the match, you can’t just say: ‘That’s not the result I want, let’s keep playing an extra 15 minutes until we get the result I want.’
“I voted to Leave and I still want to Leave. I know it will be difficult. It was difficult after the two world wars. There was still rationing when I was born.
He isn’t sure whether he will vote for Rory Stewart again, but says he is “likely to have halved his votes at the next election.”
“Rory Stewart was elected as MP to represent us so he should have represented the majority of the wishes of his constituents.”As owner of a coffee shop and a sweet shop in Penrith, Jamie Redman, 27, hears a lot of opinions about Brexit and says the majority of people just want to see a conclusion.
He said: “Rory Stewart was not following through with his party so his sacking was deserved. He should have supported Boris Johnson in what he is trying to do.
“I think Boris Johnson is trying to do the right thing. He just needs to push Brexit through. If that means no-deal, it means no-deal, but we just need to get rid of the uncertainty.
“With a lot of our suppliers, the biggest issue is the uncertainty. After three years, a lot of people just want to see a conclusion.” Chef Jon Messenger doesn’t agree. The 27-year-old says he is worried about a no-deal Brexit outcome and thinks it is wrong for MPs to be sacked for standing up for what they believe or having a different opinion.
“If Rory Stewart thinks he is doing what is best for his constituents, he should not get sacked for it,” he said.
“He should not be sacked for sticking up for his principles or for having a different opinion.
“If MPs get sacked for standing up for what they feel the people they represent want, what’s the point of having a government? It is turning it into a dictatorship.
“Even though I voted Leave, I think it is wrong that Rory Stewart has been sacked for trying to protect the people in his constituency.”Ballet teacher Stephanie Milstead recently moved to Penrith from Windsor. 
The 48-year-old told HuffPost UK she had tried to steer clear of Brexit news as she is “fed up of hearing about the arguments in parliament between MPs and parties.”
“Boris Johnson has kicked up a bit of a storm,” she said. ”I felt he was going to get something done but now I feel I don’t know if anyone is going to achieve anything with Brexit as it is so divisive and no one seems to agree on anything.
“I think Rory Stewart should have supported his constituents as they voted for him and Penrith voted to leave.
“I did not vote at the time as I felt I did not have enough information to vote either way. But Rory Stewart should have represented his constituents and the vote that was taken. Otherwise, we are just going to be stuck in this No Man’s Land which is so unsettling for everyone.”Related... What The Hell Happened In Parliament Last Night – And What’s Next For Brexit? The 21 Tory Rebels Sacked By Boris Johnson For Voting To Block A No-Deal Brexit Tory Rebels Win Crucial Vote In Bid To Block No-Deal Brexit Rory Stewart Mocks Boris Johnson With Little Britain Tweet And Confirms He Will Rebel Over No-Deal Brexit
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