‘You need to keep Boris in power!’ Jeremy Vine slams Labour MP over election chances

Labour needs to 'keep Boris in power' says Jeremy Vine

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Jeremy Vine welcomed Labour MP Nadia Whittome and LBC broadcaster Iain Dale onto his Channel 5 show on Tuesday morning to discuss the future of Boris Johnson. The Prime Minister survived a vote of no-confidence with the backing of 211 MPs to 148. However, Vine quizzed Whittome on whether it would be beneficial for the opposition if Johnson remained leader of the Conservatives. 

Vine said: “Iain is a great scholar of Mrs Thatcher and you’ll remember when she was about to be toppled Labour under Neil Kinnock suddenly thought, ‘Oh my goodness she’s going to go that’s not meant to happen’ because they suddenly realised she might be an asset to them.”

Vine explained the Labour Party hoped a vote of no-confidence in Thatcher would “get all the Conservative MPs to rally around her” but “it didn’t quite work”.

“But if Boris Johnson is as bad amongst the electorate as you think he is you need to keep him in power, don’t you?” Vine asked. 

“Well that’s the thing,” Whittome replied. “That’s why this isn’t just about party politics.

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“It’s not about electioneering it’s about what’s best for the country.

“And this is a Prime Minister who has broken the law repeatedly, lied about it repeatedly, he doesn’t have the confidence of the majority of MPs, according to polls most of the country want him to go and yet he’s refusing to resign.

“What democratic mandate does he have and how do we get rid of him?”

Vine pointed out: “He’s won an 80-seat majority in an election. 

“Theresa May didn’t, Gordon Brown didn’t, John Major didn’t win one till ’92 but he did.”

The Labour MP argued: “That was then and this is now where the majority of MPs don’t back him 41 percent of his own party and when you take into account government MPs on the payroll it’s more like three-quarters of his backbenchers don’t back him.

“I think it’s a bit pathetic seeing Tory MPs lining up to support him and tweet out their support to save their necks.

“Yes we’ve got political differences but we’re all at least meant to be there to represent our constituents.

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“If you can’t even do that what’s the point of them being there?”

Elsewhere in the discussion, Dale noted: “The problem for Tory MPs is, one of their considerations is, ‘Is he still an election winner for me?’ 

“If you’re in the red wall is he going to be the effective leader he was in 2019? Because it was him personally that people voted for.

“So many people in those seats said, ‘I voted for Boris, I didn’t vote Conservative, I voted for Boris.’”

“Now I don’t know whether those same people really would vote for him this time I suspect a lot of them wouldn’t,” he continued. 

“But it’s raw politics MPs in marginal seats look at it through the prism of a marginal seat.

“Even Conservative MPs in the south of England where they’ve got Lib Dem facing opponents they’re really worried as well so you’ve got this toxic mix now for the Prime Minister.”

Jeremy Vine airs on Channel 5 on weekdays at 9.15am.

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