'The Brexit Party rebadged': Boris Johnson expels 21 Conservative moderate MPs, including 2 former chancellors and Winston Churchill's grandson

UK ParliamentBoris Johnson
  • Prime Minister Boris Johnson removes 21 Conservative members of Parliament from his party after they help inflict a major parliamentary defeat on his government.
  • The senior MPs, almost all of whom are former Conservative government ministers, include former chancellors, secretaries of state and the grandson of Winston Churchill.
  • The rebels had joined with opposition parties in order to vote for a plan that could delay the UK’s exit from the European Union and prevent a no-deal Brexit.
  • Johnson will on Wednesday evening call a vote on holding a general election, in which the rebels will be blocked from standing.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Boris Johnson has expelled 21 Conservative members of parliament, including two former chancellors and Winston Churchill’s grandson from his party, after they helped inflict a major defeat on him in his first House of Commons vote as prime minister.

The prime minister was defeated on Tuesday evening by a coalition of opposition parties and senior Conservative rebels, many of whom were former ministers, on a motion designed to pave the way for Brexit to be delayed.

In the aftermath of the vote, a senior government source confirmed that all 21 MPs, including the former chancellors Philip Hammond and Ken Clarke, and Churchill’s grandson Nicholas Soames, would lose the Conservative whip.

Read more: Boris Johnson defeated after MPs vote for plan to delay Brexit and stop a no-deal exit

Read more: Boris Johnson calls for snap general election in October to prevent Brexit delay

“The Chief Whip is speaking to Tory MPs who did not vote with the government this evening,” the source said.

“They will have the Tory whip removed.”

The decision means Johnson is now the leader of a minority government in Parliament. The prime minister will on Wednesday evening seek the approval from MPs to hold an early general election next month.

Clarke, who was first elected as a Conservative MP almost 50 years ago, accused Johnson of destroying the party.

“I don’t recognise this. It’s the Brexit Party, rebadged,” he told BBC Newsnight.

“It’s been taken over by a rather knockabout sort of character, who’s got this bizarre crash-it-through philosophy [and] a Cabinet which is the most right-wing Cabinet any Conservative Party has ever produced.”

The former Chancellor Philip Hammond has vowed to challenge his expulsion and promised Johnson “the fight of a lifetime.”

Scroll down for the full list of Conservative MPs ousted by Boris Johnson

Guto Bebb MP (former Defence minister)

Richard Benyon MP (former Environment minister)


Steve Brine MP (former Health minister)


Alistair Burt MP (former Foreign Office minister)


Greg Clark MP (former Business Secretary)

Leon Neal/Getty Images

Ken Clarke MP (former Chancellor)


David Gauke MP (former Justice Secretary)

ReutersFILE PHOTO: British government’s weekly cabinet meeting in London

Justine Greening MP (former Education secretary)

REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

Dominic Grieve MP (former Attorney General)


Sam Gyimah MP (former Prisons minister)


Philip Hammond MP (former Chancellor)

Leon Neal/Getty Images

Stephen Hammond MP (former Health minister)

Stephen Hammond MP

Richard Harrington MP (former Business minister)


Margot James MP (former Digital minister)


Oliver Letwin MP (former Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster)


Anne Milton MP (former Skills Minister)


Caroline Nokes MP (former Immigration minister)

Getty / Dan KitwoodImmigration Minister Caroline Nokes leaves Downing Street on July 17, 2018 in London, England

Antoinette Sandbach MP


Nicholas Soames (former Defence Secretary)

Simon Dawson/ReutersConservative Member of Parliament Nicholas Soames walks in Westminster, in London, Britain September 3, 2019.

Rory Stewart (former Prisons minister)

Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images

Ed Vaizey (former Culture minister)


Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.