BREXIT-BASHING Tory veteran Michael Heseltine has today had the Tory whip withdrawn after saying he’d vote Liberal Democrat in the European elections on Thursday.
The lifelong pro-European, declared he would “experiment” with voting Lib Dem over the Government’s Brexit policy.
Tory grandee Michael Heseltine, 86, has vowed to vote Lib Dem instead of Conservative this Thursday[/caption]
This evening it was confirmed by a Tory spokesman the Conservative whip has been suspended.
They said: “Lord Heseltine has given more than half a century of service to the Conservative Party and his long-standing and sincerely held views on Europe are well understood.
“But, with his long experience, he will know that publicly endorsing the candidates of an another party is not compatible with taking the Conservative whip in Parliament.
“As a result, the Chief Whip in the House of Lords has informed Lord Heseltine that he will have the Conservative whip suspended.
“This will be reviewed if he is willing to support Conservative candidates at future elections.”
The EU-fanatic peer previously vowed never to quit the Conservatives after suggesting Jeremy Corbyn is better than Brexit.
Heseltine announced he will not vote Tory until the party “sees sense” by backing a second referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union.
In past elections, he has abstained from giving Theresa May’s party his vote, but now the former peputy PM has pledged to support the EU-loving Liberal Democrats.
Writing in The Sunday Times, he said: “Brexit seeps its poison into every family, age group, class and region.
“I have already made it clear that I will not vote Conservatives but this time neither will I abstain.
“In four days’ time, when I place my cross on the ballot paper for the European parliamentary elections, I will vote for a party other than the Conservatives.
“I will, however, be voting for someone I regard as a ‘Conservative’.
“Where I live in Northamptonshire, Bill Newton Dunn is top of a list of Liberal Democrat candidates to whom I am happy to lend my support.”
Heseltine added Mr Newton Dunn was a Tory MEP before the party was “infected by the virus of extremism”.
Despite turning against his own party, the 86-year-old said he has no intention of being forced out or resigning.
He wrote: “I will remain a member of my local association and, unless told otherwise, will continue to take the Conservative whip in the Lords.”
The grandee has withstood pressure to quit the party in the past and insisted that he is closer to the Tory mainstream than Brexiteers with his pro-EU views.
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He went on to describe Brexit a the “biggest act of self-harm ever undertaken by a democratic government”.
His announcement comes as PM Theresa May tries to win back support for the Tories amid the Brexit Party threat.
She said its leader Nigel Farage can’t take Britain out of the EU because he only “shouts from the sidelines”.
Anti-Brexit party the Liberal Democrats have called for a second referendum and people’s vote[/caption]
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