Natalie Elphicke: One CLP passes motion urging Labour to kick out ex-Tory MP

Daniel Green
Photo: @Keir_Starmer

At least one Constituency Labour Party has now passed a motion condemning the decision to welcome Natalie Elphicke into the party, calling it “galling” when some left-wing MPs are suspended.

Controversy has continued to swirl after the former Conservative MP for Dover and Deal, seen as one of the most right-wing parliamentarians, crossed the floor last week.

The motion, said to have been passed almost unanimously by members of the City of Durham CLP, expressed “strong protest and dismay” at the acceptance of Elphicke into Labour.

The motion read: “Accepting someone into our ranks who clearly does not share the values of the Labour movement is a retrograde step and even more galling when we see long-standing socialists excluded from the parliamentary party at the present time.

“This grubby move by our party’s leadership debases our values and what we stand for. The Labour Party should be in the business of changing the country, not saving the careers of Tory politicians who the British public are rejecting because of the damage they’ve done to communities across our country.”

The CLP called on the party leadership and the party’s national executive Committee to reverse its “misguided” decision to welcome Natalie Elphicke into Labour.

After the CLP posted the motion on social media, a number of individuals claimed they would be leaving the party over the decision to allow Elphicke into the party.

One wrote: “I cannot remain a member of the party under its current direction and accepting a Tory MP who is so opposed to Labour values was the last straw for me.”

It comes as the Folkestone and Hythe CLP, which neighbours Elphicke’s constituency of Dover, posted on social media that it was “shocked and appalled” by the decision, describing the MP as a “toxic and divisive figure who has no place in the Labour Party”.

“While it might have been temporarily headline grabbing to accept her, tremendous damage has been done to the party’s reputation in doing so,” the CLP said.

Elphicke has faced claims from former justice secretary Robert Buckland that she tried to lobby him while her ex-husband Charlie Elphicke faced trial for sexual assault. Charlie Elphicke was jailed in 2020 for two years for sexually assaulting two women.

A spokesman for Natalie Elphicke has described Buckland’s claims as “nonsense”.

However, Labour MP for Canterbury Rosie Duffield is among those to have called for the party to suspend the Dover MP while investigating the allegation, only a few days after she welcomed the fact she was no longer the only Labour MP in Kent on social media.

Speaking to the BBC, Duffield said: “I think that if the shoe was on the other foot, if she was still officially a Conservative MP, we would rightly be calling for this to be thoroughly investigated and that’s what should happen in this case.”

The Labour Party was approached for comment.

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