The MP was seeking a declaration that Reigate Conservatives had no power to vote to oust him and their decision was therefore void. He also wanted an injunction restraining the association from adopting a new prospective Conservative candidate for the Surrey constituency. But Sir Richard Scott, the vice-chairman, said there was nothing in the rules of the constituency association which barred them from the de-selection process at a general meeting.
"There is no contractual right of a prospective candidate precluding the association from de-selecting him and selecting someone who has become a more desirable candidate. The rules of the association are part of the democratic process to put an MP into Parliament. The notion that a candidate has contractual rights is to my mind unacceptable," he said.