Former Tory prime minister Sir John Major has launched a stinging attack on Boris Johnson and his inner circle, calling his chief adviser a “political anarchist”.
Speaking in Glasgow on Thursday evening, Sir John denounced the prime minister’s suspension of parliament and the sacking of 21 Tory rebels who voted against the government.
He described the prime minister’s adviser Dominic Cummings as a “political anarchist, who cares not a fig for the future of the party I have served all my life”.
Mr Major says the prime minister's chief adviser 'cares not a fig' for the Conservative Party
“I offer the prime minister some friendly advice: get rid of these advisers before they poison the political atmosphere beyond repair. And do it quickly,” he said.
He also criticised a climate of “aggressive bullying” within Westminster.
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Sir John spoke in support of the Conservative MPs who were thrown out of the party for defying the government, including Ken Clarke and Sir Nicholas Soames.
“Such men and women adorn parliament, and the millions whose views they represent will not forgive or forget that they have been treated so brutally.”
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Commenting on the decision to prorogue parliament Sir John said ministers are “playing fast and loose” with the UK’s future.
“I cannot believe any previous prime minister – from Pitt, to Disraeli, to Churchill, to Thatcher – would have even contemplated such an action,” he said.
Boris Johnson took the decisions to prorogue parliament and sack 21 Tory MPs
Sir John has joined a legal challenge mounted by anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller against Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament.
Lawyers representing Ms Miller say the prorogation is in breach of parliamentary sovereignty and the five-week suspension is of “exceptional length”.
But critics accused Sir John of hypocrisy, given the fact that he prorogued parliament ahead of the 1997 general election, which stopped a report on the cash for questions scandal being considered by MPs.
He said “we carried the election until almost the very last date” and it was an “absurd charge”.