Political editor WALTER CRONXITE suggests that Brexit may have sunk the prospects of another career politician
Prospects for Gaffe-prone Gavin Barwell to return to the House of Commons as an MP appear to be as ruined a the credibility of his boss, Theresa Mayhem, after the latest Brexit balls-up.
Barwell, for seven years the Conservative MP for Croydon Central, had made it known to friends and confidants within the Croydon Tory party – presumably over a plate of over-priced Portuguese spice chicken – that were he to seek to return to Parliament, it would not be by campaigning to regain his former seat (code for: “I don’t think I have a chance of beating Sarah Jones”).
Barwell was the author of his own political downfall, or How To Lose A Marginal Seat, though at least for him, after he was rejected by Croydon voters in the 2017 General Election, his reward for failure was to land himself a whopping pay-rise and a job at 10 Downing Street as the Prime Minister’s chief of staff.
Since then, he’s been eyeing safe Tory seats in outer London, with a particular liking for nearby Beckenham, where Colonel Bob Stewart, at 69 years old, is expected to stand down before the next election.
But Barwell’s all-too-prominent role in the heap of ordure that is the Prime Minister’s Brexit withdrawal agreement, and the events of the past 18 months which led to it, has caused gaffe-prone Gav all sorts of reputational damage, not least with the influential chairman of the local Conservative Party association where he had pinned his hopes of reviving his parliamentary career.
The letters pages of the Sunday Torygraph, for so long the territory occupied by the true-blue voices of the likes of Herbert Gussett (Col, retd) and Sir Bufton Tufton from Tunbridge Wells, this morning contains a letter from Brian Cooke, who signs himself as the chairman of Beckenham Conservatives.
It doesn’t take much reading between the lines to work out to whom Cooke is referring.
Under the newspaper’s headline, “A disastrous Brexit deal has followed a disastrous election because Theresa May will not listen”, Cooke has written, “Sir, I have now have come to the reluctant conclusion that Theresa May has to go. The reason is very simple.
“The farce of the last unnecessary and disastrous general election was caused by her listening almost exclusively to her now disgraced special advisers, rather than to the Cabinet, her MPs, the party or election specialists. She said she had learnt her lesson. She clearly hasn’t.”
Note that: “her now disgraced special advisers”.
That will include the now disgraced Barwell and his Croydon clique in Downing Street of Mario Creatura (pictured left) and Jason Cummings, borough councillors prominent in the Conservatives’ local party in Croydon.
Any parliamentary candidate selection interview panel held in Beckenham, with Cooke in the chair and Barwell as the hopeful, if slightly gormless, wannabe, can surely go only one way after such excoriating remarks published in the national press.
And Creatura’s chances of getting selected as the Tory candidate for Croydon and Sutton in the 2020 London Assembly elections won’t have been helped much, either.
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