'I couldn't vote with them' - Lee Anderson blames 'sniggering' Labour MPs for Rwanda vote abstention

'I couldn't vote with them' - Lee Anderson blames 'sniggering' Labour MPs for Rwanda vote abstention
Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 18/01/2024

- 08:54

Updated: 18/01/2024

- 08:58

The Tory MP walked out of the 'no' lobby

Lee Anderson has explained how he walked out of the ‘no’ lobby after the ‘playground politics’ of 'sniggering' Labour MPs made him realise he could not vote against the government.

Speaking on GB News, he said:

“I was going to vote no. I went into the no lobby to vote no, because I couldn't see how I could support the bill after backing all the amendments.

“I got into the no lobby and I spent about two or three minutes with a colleague in there. The Labour lot were giggling and laughing and taking the mick and I couldn't do it: In my heart of hearts, I couldn’t vote no.

So I walked out and abstained.

“I wanted to vote no, but when I saw that lot in there laughing there's no way I could support them above the party that's given me a political home.

“So I hope that the Bill succeeds. You know I’ve got my reservations. It has upset me, honestly, over the past 24 hours.

“It is a difficult thing to do, not to support the government which has been really, really good to me and good to Ashfield let's remember, this government has given actually record amounts of investment.

“I hope the bill works, I hope it stops the boats and from now on the Prime Minister's got my full support.

“I’m gutted, to be honest with you.

“I went into no lobby to rebel, this is the key word at the moment, but when I saw the labour lot sniggling and taking the mick…

“They were sniggering and pointing and laughing and saying, ‘Oh Lee Anderson’s in here, he’s coming back to the Labour party.’

“I saw that and I thought, ‘I’m off’. It’s playground politics.

“I have to accept democracy as well. There's been a battle within the party with the amendments. We lost, we lost our arguments on the amendments, they were defeated. That's democracy. We should suck it up and accept it.

“I hope the bill works. I don't want the Labour Party in this country. I don't want the Labour Party in charge of our asylum process.

“On Saturday night I'll be up in Glasgow talking to Scottish Conservatives, rallying the troops, getting them to get out and get their message across before the next election.

“The week after I'll be somewhere else the week after. I'll be somewhere else talking to Conservative around the country. For next six months my diary is full going around the country speaking to proper Conservatives about why we should vote Conservative for the next election.

Commenting on Richard Tice’s offer to join Reform UK, Mr Anderson said:

“I've got more chance of joining the Tupperware party.”

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