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Downing Street Under Pressure To Remove Whip From Chris Pincher

Downing Street Under Pressure To Remove Whip From Chris Pincher
2 min read

Boris Johnson is under growing pressure to remove the Conservative whip from Chris Pincher after the MP quit government on Thursday following allegations that he groped two men.

Pincher wrote to the Prime Minister saying he was resigning as deputy chief whip because he had drank "far too much" alcohol and "embarrassed myself and other people" on Wednesday night, The Sun reported.

The newspaper reported that the Tory MP for Tamworth is accused of groping two men at central London's Carlton Club, and that several Conservative MPs complained to the whips' office about his conduct.

Downing Street has not removed the whip from Pincher despite the allegations.

However, Welsh Secretary Simon Hart this morning dropped a hint that he would like to see Pincher lose the whip and suggested that it could happen as soon as today.

"It is not my decision. I know what I'd like to see happen. You can probably tell what that is just from the way I am trying to avoid answering your question," Hart told Sky News.

"We need to allow today to play out," the Cabinet minister added.

"I know it's the most boring thing in the world when people like me come on and won't give you a straight answer.

"I just think let today play out, let the chief whip do his duty, and we might be having a very different conversation as the day goes on."

Labour's deputy leader Angela Rayner last night piled pressure on Johnson to kick Pincher out of the Tory party, saying he faced "serious questions" about why he was still a Conservative MP.

“There cannot be any question of the Conservatives sweeping a potential sexual assault under the carpet," she said.

Rayner said the Prime Minister must explain why Pincher was given the role of deputy chip wip in the first place.

Politico's London Playbook this morning reports that Johnson was made aware of allegations of inappropriate behaviour by Pincher before making him deputy chief whip at February's reshuffle.

The revelations about Pincher are set to pile yet more pressure on the Prime Minister's leadership as he returns to London from several trips abroad. 

The Conservative party has faced numerous scandals involving its MPs this year. 

In May, Neil Parish resigned as a Conservative MP after being caught watching porn in the House of Commons.

In the same month Imran Ahmad Khan, the former Conservative MP for Wakefield, was sentenced to 18 months in jail for sexual assaulting a 15-year-old boy and an unnamed Tory MP was arrested on suspicion of rape.

In April, Dave Warbuton lost the Conservative whip following allegations of sexual harassment and drug use.


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