Rishi Sunak has 'good reason' to remove the Tory whip from 'terrible person' Boris Johnson, Rory Stewart says

28 February 2023, 19:04 | Updated: 1 March 2023, 01:13

Rory Stewart has said Rishi Sunak has good reason to remove the whip from Boris Johnson
Rory Stewart has said Rishi Sunak has good reason to remove the whip from Boris Johnson. Picture: LBC/Getty

By Kit Heren

Rishi Sunak would have good reason to withdraw the whip from Boris Johnson, Rory Stewart has said.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Speaking on LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr on Tuesday, former Conservative MP Mr Stewart said that former PM Mr Johnson was "a terrible person" and a "terrible Prime Minister".

Mr Stewart - who himself lost the Tory whip in 2019 for voting against Mr Johnson's government as part of a rebellion against a no-deal Brexit - said that Mr Johnson had behaved "outrageously" and "disloyally".

He told Andrew: "Boris Johnson threw out myself, and Ken Clarke and Nicholas Soames and 21 people who voted against the type of Brexit deal he was pushing ahead with. 

"And we certainly weren’t behaving quite as outrageously and disloyally as Boris Johnson seems to have been behaving recently - so he'd have good reason to do it".

Rory Stewart tells Andrew Marr the PM has ‘good reason’ to kick out Boris Johnson

But Mr Stewart added that removing the whip from Mr Johnson would be difficult because "at the point at which Boris Johnson threw us out, the Conservative Party was very much caught up in the Brexit movement… I think that isn't the case now."

He said: "Boris Johnson, although I loathe him - I think he is a terrible person, terrible Prime Minister - is still popular with many people in the Conservative Party, and it would be a big step."

Mr Stewart considered a run for London mayor in 2020, but suspended his candidacy after the race was pushed back because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Asked whether he would re-join the Conservative Party, he said: "It is definitely a party I am more sympathetic to. I'm very, very proud of what Rishi Sunak did, I'm proud to praise him… I’m not quite there yet I guess, not quite there yet.

Rory Stewart
Rory Stewart. Picture: Getty

"But I think it is a lovely development in a sense that I was very worried we were living in the age of populism, I was worried we were living in an age of very, very superficial, very simplistic coarse politics.

"I think Rishi Sunak, and to some extent Keir Starmer, represent a move back to a more thoughtful style of politics."

Read more: ‘He needs to pipe down’: caller criticises Boris Johnson for being an ‘embarrassment’

Read more: 'Get on with it': Boris Johnson rejects Sunak's claims it's 'not practical' to send fighter jets to Ukraine

Pressed on whether he would vote for the Conservatives in the future, Mr Stewart said: "I've been much, much more impressed.

"So, for someone like me who represents the sort-of left of the Conservative Party, the centre of the Conservative party, the last week has transformed my perception of Rishi Sunak."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Dario G star Paul Spencer

Dario G star Paul Spencer dies aged 53 following cancer diagnosis

Reform chairman Richard Tice was speaking on Tonight with Andrew Marr.

'Take them back to France': Reform will have 'standoff' with French over illegal migrants if needed, says Richard Tice

The teen was helping cut the tree down as a summer job.

Pictured: Boy, 16, crushed by 30ft tree just a day after finishing final GCSE exam - as three arrested

Police hunt 21-year-old man following death of boy, 12 in shocking hit-and-run

Manhunt for Coventry hit-and-run suspect continues following death of boy, 12, as police urge public to 'do the right thing'

Parts of the UK face severe rainfall next week, dramatic weather maps suggest

Thunderstorms set to drench Britain with 10 days worth of rain failing in just three hours

Fury erupted after the cow was rammed by a police car

Let us not be hypocrites when we look at the shocking case of the runaway cow

'I didn't expect to die today': Heartbreaking film hopes to keep teenagers out of open water danger

'I didn't expect to die today': Heartbreaking film hopes to keep teenagers out of open water danger

Prince William seen at a procession for the annual Garter Day service

William beams during Order of the Garter procession as royals join King and Queen at Windsor Castle

The parkour runner damaged the UNESCO World Heritage Site building in Italy in a parkour stunt

Shocking footage captures parkour runner damaging UNESCO World Heritage Site in Italy

Defendant Josef Fritzl, center, is escorted to the fourth day of his trial in the provincial courthouse in St. Poelten, Austria, Thursday, March 19, 2009.

Incest monster Josef Fritzl placed under legal guardianship amid worsening dementia

Rod Stewart (pictured on stage in Copenhagen on Sunday June 9) was booed by German fans for supporting Ukraine

Rod Stewart defends show of support for Ukraine after booing at Germany concert

Police officer found guilty of gross misconduct after joyrider killed child actor and aunt in 60mph pursuit

Police officer found guilty of gross misconduct after joyrider killed child actor and aunt in 60mph pursuit

Mugshot of McNaughton, left, and smiling photo or Mr Coshan, right

Catfisher jailed for life after murdering retired teacher he 'lured' to flat using fake profile on gay dating site

Keir Starmer said he was "really shocked" at the footage

'Shocked' Keir Starmer accuses police of 'animal cruelty' after runaway cow rammed five times with squad car

The OceanGate submersible has five people on board

Poignant CGI shows how deep doomed Titan descended on it's ill-fated final journey to the Titanic wreck

Nigel Farage vows to fix 'broken Britain' as he launches Reform UK election 'contract'

Nigel Farage vows to fix 'broken Britain' as he launches Reform UK election 'contract'