WATCH: Anna Soubry tells Theresa May to 'sling out' Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson

Posted On: 
6th February 2018

Former minister Anna Soubry has reignited the Tory civil war over Europe by saying "hard ideological Brexiteers" such as Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson should be "slung out" of the party by Theresa May.

Anna Soubry appearing on Newsnight last night
BBC Newsnight

The outspoken MP said a hardcore of 35 eurosceptics was holding the Prime Minister to ransom and should be expelled. 

And she even threatened to quit the party and join a new political movement if it is taken over by Mr Rees-Mogg and Mr Johnson, who she claimed were not "proper Conservatives".

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Speaking to Newsnight, the Broxbourne MP said: "Labour's frontbench itself is ideological, my frontbench probably isn't but it's in hock to 35 hard, ideological Brexiteers who are not Tories. They're not the Tory party that I joined 40 years ago and it's about time Theresa stood up to them and slung 'em out, because they've taken down Major, they took down Cameron, two great leaders, neither of whom stood up to them."

And she again threatened to walk away from the party unless the front bench changes tack on Brexit.

"If it comes to it I'm not going to stay in a party which has been taken over by the likes of Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson. They're not proper Conservatives, and if that means leaving the party, forming some new alliance, God knows, I don't know but we just simply cannot go on like this any longer.

"Something is going to have to give because if it doesn't, not only will we get Jacob Rees-Mogg as our Prime Minister, but we'll get a devastating hard Brexit which will cause huge damage to our economy for generations to come and I'm not prepared to sit by any longer and put up with this nonsense."

Were Ms Soubry to depart it could create a potentially damaging by-election for Mrs May in a seat the Tories won by only 863 votes at last year's snap election.

In the Commons last week, the MP called on the Prime Minister to "get a grip" on Brexit or risk being destroyed by her own MPs.