Grant Shapps issues plea to Reform voters after Nigel Farage announcement

Grant Shapps issues plea to Reform voters after Nigel Farage announcement
Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 03/06/2024

- 21:18

The Defence Secretary Grant Shapps has said it would be ‘the worst thing possible’ for people who want to control immigration to vote Reform.

Speaking on GB News Grant Shapps said:

“I don’t think the idea there are other candidates in an election is [a nightmare] at all, other than to say that if people care about some of the things that Rishi cares about, the worst thing possible for somebody to do if they care about those sorts of things is to vote for Reform.

"That's because it would lead to Starmer, absolutely undoing all of that. He’s no intention of tackling illegal migration through a change in the law at all.

“We know for a fact that Keir Starmer says he doesn't even want to use the Rwanda scheme. In fact, he'd scrap it even if it was working. And the point here is that we've painstakingly legislated for, always with the objection of Labour voting against us 136 times, to put a scheme in place which is ready to go.

"I simply don't know what Keir Starmer really believes. You can't just walk away from the fact that 12 or 13 members of the shadow front bench, so that's Keir Starmer's top team, voted against Trident.

“Now we're supposed to believe that they've had a conversion. Suddenly they highly believe in our nuclear defence, and it just won’t wash because we know many of them were members of CND, we know that they've campaigned against our nuclear deterrent. I don't feel it's safe in their hands as a result."

On whether Rishi Sunak should have taken the advice of Jacob Rees-Mogg and struck a deal with Reform, he said:

“It's very simple. Actually, the Conservative Party, and I've been chairman of it in the past, so I know the rules, which is, anyone can be a member, but you cannot be a member of the party whilst you belong to a different political party, whilst you stand candidates in elections to compete.

“So it's a very, very simple principle. I was asked this question numerous times ten years ago, when I was party chairman, and I was always being asked, why don't we just somehow allow people who are not currently members of the party and are a member of different party into the party?

“ And the answer is, of course, you can't. You can't do that in a political party. You have to have boundaries.

“And now people are free to join, but they can't join whilst they belong to a different party at the same time.”

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