Sunday 25 August 2019

Conservatives cut up membership cards after PM agrees to talks with Corbyn

Holding negotiations with the Labour leader has been described by former members as an ’emphatic capitulation’.

By Edd Dracott, Press Association

Conservative Party members are cutting up their membership cards and sharing the results on social media, describing Theresa May’s announcement that she will hold Brexit talks with Jeremy Corbyn as the “final straw”.

Pub owner Adam Brooks, from Essex, was one of many to share a photo of his chopped up card.

Mr Brooks said the Labour leader “has no right to be involved” in Brexit talks and Mrs May has “killed” the Conservative Party.

Lawrence Gartshore, 16, said he cancelled his membership hours after the Prime Minister’s announcement from Downing Street on Tuesday evening.

“The Conservative Party are not conservative any longer,” the school student from Warwick told the Press Association.

“This emphatic capitulation by May was really the final straw.”

On Wednesday Mrs May was hit by the resignation of Leave-backing Wales minister and whip Nigel Adams, who called the decision to speak with Mr Corbyn a “grave error”.

By contrast prisons minister Rory Stewart welcomed the Prime Minister’s decision, tweeting: “The PM is absolutely right – a no-deal is chaotic and unnecessary – we can do a much better Brexit deal by working together and we must.”

Mr Corbyn welcomed Mrs May’s “willingness to compromise to resolve the Brexit deadlock”, but otherwise avoided the issue during Prime Minister’s Questions.

Brexit backer Lawrence said he has supported the Conservatives all his life along with the rest of his family, becoming a paying member about four years ago.

“A common market deal that continues all of our current membership whilst losing our vote, as I’m sure Mr Corbyn will press for, is undoubtedly worse than remaining,” he said.

He added the Conservatives could be “redeemed” by a change of leader, and the timing of Mrs May’s talks with Mr Corbyn were the key factor in his decision.

“Please don’t get me wrong, I would have had nothing against her speaking with Corbyn a year ago, earlier on in the Brexit process,” he said.

“But to do so now, so late on, with the clear intention of bullying the party into voting for a customs union – that is deplorable.”

For fellow Brexit advocate Busta Miller, 24, this is the second time he has cut up a Conservative membership card in three weeks.

“I was angry a few weeks ago and cut up my old conservative membership card,” the 24-year-old from Ealing said.

“I was hoping it would show the party how people like me felt.”

After his latest card cutting, Mr Miller said: “Asking to meet with Corbyn for a way forward on Brexit was the last straw for me.

“As this incompetent leader has said numerous times, no deal is better than a bad deal. Well that was just another lie among the many and I’m done with it.”

PA Media

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editors Choice

Also in World News