Tory row erupts as Rishi Sunak INSISTS Boris Johnson ally David Frost is NOT banned from standing to be a Tory MP

Rishi Sunak and Lord David Frost

Tory row erupts as Sunak DENIES banning key Boris ally...but Frost INSISTS Rishi doesn't know what he's talking about

Christopher Hope

By Christopher Hope

Published: 24/05/2024

- 15:16

Updated: 24/05/2024

- 16:09

Friends of Lord Frost claimed he had been banned from standing as a Tory MP

Rishi Sunak has insisted that he has not banned David Frost from standing in the General Election, in a row over the future of the ally of Boris Johnson.

Earlier friends of Lord Frost, the former Cabinet minister and a key ally of Boris Johnson, said he had been banned from standing as a Conservative candidate at the General Election.

They said the peer was told yesterday that he cannot apply for any of the 93 vacant seats where the party is yet to nominate a candidate for the July 4 general election, according to his friends.

However, the claim was categorically denied by Sunak, who was speaking to broadcast journalists on a flight from Belfast to Birmingham airport towards the end of a marathon 36-hour UK campaign tour.

Lord Frost

Lord David Frost

GB News

Sunak said: "David Frost has not been blocked from standing as a candidate at the election in July.

That is just not right. ..."The process only opened on Wednesday night and it takes time for the process to conclude for candidates selection.

"It is not true to say he has been blocked."

In response, friends of Frost said he was told in February by a senior party figure that he was on the candidates' list but that his position had been deferred and would be reviewed after three months.

The committee is now set to review Frost's candidature again on May 29, the peer is understood to have been told yesterday.

Rishi Sunak

Rishi Sunak addresses journalists on flight from Nothern Ireland


Frost is a low-tax Tory who was one of the architects of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson's deal for the UK to leave the European Union. He was described as "the great Frost" by Johnson for his work on the deal.

The news will raise some eyebrows among Tory activists, some of whom have been directly approaching Lord Frost directly to stand.

Lord Frost said last May that he wanted to give up his seat in the Lords in exchange for a place in the Commons – the first person to do so since a rule change to allow such a move in 2014.

Lord Frost rose to fame as the UK’s chief Brexit negotiator in 2019, and led the talks that resulted in Johnson’s revised Brexit withdrawal agreement.

He led Britain into trade deal negotiations with the EU, before being nominated for a peerage and serving as a Cabinet minister.

During a dispute with the EU over Northern Ireland, Johnson described his friend as the “greatest Frost since the Great Frost of 1709”.

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