Dispute over pact
Brexit candidate quits Scots seat over Farage Tory deal
Louis Stedman-Bryce (third from right) at the May election (pic: Terry Murden)
A Brexit Party candidate has stood down from fighting a Scottish seat in protest at the party’s decision not to stand in any Conservative-held seats.
Louis Stedman-Bryce, who was elected to the European Parliament in May, was expected to contest the Glasgow North East Westminster seat currently held by Labour’s Paul Sweeney.
On Monday, Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage announced his party would not contest the 317 Tory seats won during the 2017 election.
He said: “What we will do is concentrate our total effort into all of the seats that are held by the Labour Party, who have completely broken their manifesto in 2017.”
But Mr Stedman-Bryce tweeted: “I joined the Brexit Party to change politics for good and uphold democracy and I do not trust Boris Johnson to deliver the type of Brexit I voted for. I believe that the deal he has proposed would be devastating to our country and our future prosperity.
“So it is with a heavy heart that I have taken the decision not to run in the upcoming general election.”
He added that while he supported “a localised agreement with the Tories in Scotland to help prevent the onslaught of the SNP”, he could not support the action across all Tory-held seats.
The Brexit Party’s Director of Campaign Strategy, Jack Irvine remarked: “I don’t understand Mr Steadman-Bryce’s logic.
“Had Nigel Farage not announced that we wouldn’t contest the 317 constituencies that the Tories won in 2017 there is every chance we would be looking at a far left, Corbyn government that will keep us trapped in the EU indefinitely.
“Louis is a successful businessman and passionate Brexiteer. Is that really what he wants?”
Ex-Labour minister says: ‘back Boris’
A former Labour government minister has said he will vote for the Scottish Conservatives at the upcoming General Election, as Jeremy Corbyn would “betray” the people of Scotland.
Tom Harris, a Labour MP in Glasgow for 14 years, said the prospect of Mr Corbyn as Prime Minister “just chills me to the bone”.
He said the Labour leader couldn’t be trusted with national security, and would sell No voters out for a deal with the SNP.
His intervention came as Mr Corbyn spends two days in Scotland.
Scottish Conservative MSP Annie Wells said: “This is an important intervention from a highly respected former Labour MP.
“Labour voters don’t have to agree with everything the Scottish Conservatives do or say.
“But if they’re serious about keeping Scotland in the UK and finally moving on from a decade of chaos and division, there really is only one party for them.”