'Millionaires in safe seats': Shrewsbury MP Daniel Kawczynski savages former ERG colleagues
Just days after quitting the pro-Brexit European Research Group, Shrewsbury MP Daniel Kawczynski has launched a scathing attack on his fellow colleagues.
Mr Kawczynski, who this week announced he was leaving the group over fears that its opposition to Prime Minister Theresa May’s deal would lead to Brexit not happening, described them as “millionaires in safe seats” and “out of control”.
He said the ERG is “destroying the reputation of the Conservative Party”.
While a member of the group, Mr Kawczynski had voted against Theresa May’s deal twice, before announcing his support ahead of its third parliamentary defeat on March 30.
He then revealed that he would be leaving the ERG, which includes as members North Shropshire MP Owen Paterson and high profile Brexiteers Jacob Rees-Mogg and Stone MP Sir Bill Cash.
Mr Kawczynski said the ERG’s opposition to Theresa May’s deal could lead to the Conservative Party being decimated.
He said: “These ERG MPs are holding us to ransom. If this continues as it is the Conservative Party will be decimated. Who the hell is standing up to them? They are out of control.”
The Polish-born MP also warned that a failure to leave the EU would lead to the Tory party being punished.
He said: “If this national humiliation goes on and we don’t get this deal across the line, we will be punished, and we will lose credibility for a generation.”
Mr Kawczynski pulled no punches in his criticism, saying members of the ERG were showing “a huge amount of arrogance” and included “millionaires in safe seats who think they will be cushioned from any catastrophic fall-out” in the backlash the Conservative Party would go through at the next election if it didn't get the Prime Minister's deal across the line.
The Shrewsbury & Atcham MP also said that some of the group’s members had a sexist attitude towards the prime minister. He said: “I think there’s some misogynism there. There’s some at play.”
The comments come as Nigel Farage launched a new Brexit Party with a rally at Birmingham’s ICC ahead of potential European Parliament elections. The party will have the same policies as Ukip but will be distanced from the far right, Mr Farage said.
“In terms of policy, there’s no difference, but in terms of personnel there is a vast difference,” he said.
“Ukip did struggle to get enough good people into it but unfortunately what it’s chosen to do is allow the far right to join it and take it over and I’m afraid the brand is now tarnished.”