Ex-Tory Minister David Gauke to stand as an independent candidate in the General Election

12 November 2019, 23:22

David Gauke will stand as an independent
David Gauke will stand as an independent. Picture: PA

By Maddie Goodfellow

The former Conservative Justice Minister has announced he will be standing as an independent candidate at the General Election.

David Gauke has announced that he will contest the South West Hertfordshire seat he has held since 2005 as an independent candidate.

He has previously endorsed calls for a second referendum, saying saying there was no longer any chance of uniting the country around a "relatively soft Brexit".

Mr Gauke was one of 21 MPs kicked out of the Tory party in September after they backed a plan to take control of the Commons timetable to pass legislation to block a no-deal Brexit.

Unlike some of his fellow Tories, he did not have the whip restored.

Mr Gauke told The Times: "I represent a form of liberal Conservatism, but the last few months have been increasingly uncomfortable...

"The principle issue of this General Election is Brexit and I think that the Conservative Party has got it badly wrong.

"The easy thing to do would be to go quietly but I feel that I have to make a stand and make the case that we are heading towards an outcome that we will deeply regret."

His decision is likely to put pressure on the Liberal Democrats to stand their candidate down in the constituency.