Brexiteer Labour MP Kate Hoey suffers vote of no confidence from her constituency members

Vauxhall MP tells The Independent: 'After 29 years as an MP I am quite relaxed about the vote and it won’t influence in anyway how I vote in the future'

Ashley Cowburn
Political Correspondent
Friday 27 July 2018 11:06 BST
Kate Hoey: 'You might think I am talking absolute nonsense, but there's 17 million and a half who don't'

Prominent Labour MP and Brexiteer Kate Hoey has suffered a vote of no confidence from her local constituency members for “reneging” on general election commitments to oppose a hard Brexit.

Party activists in her south London seat of Vauxhall, which voted overwhelmingly to Remain at the European Union referendum, passed the motion on Thursday evening for the party to remove the whip from Ms Hoey.

Delegates accused Ms Hoey, who has represented the area for nearly three decades, of “collaborating” with the Conservatives and “colluding with Nigel Farage”.

A Vauxhall Labour source said the meeting was open to all 2,300 members to attend but no members who turned up spoke in defence of the longstanding MP as the non-legally binding motion was put to delegates.

“Just three delegates abstained on the motion, no one voted against and the other 42 delegates voted in favour,” they said.

But responding to the decision, Ms Hoey told The Independent: “Not a surprise – my local party activists are solid EU remainers. I will always put my country before my party and helping my constituents is a priority.

“After 29 years as an MP I am quite relaxed about the vote and it won’t influence in anyway how I vote in the future.”

It comes after Ms Hoey was one of four Labour MPs to vote with Theresa May’s government on a crucial Brexit vote that resulted in the prime minister narrowly avoiding a defeat that could have destabilised her government.

On a motion that sought to keep Britain in a customs union if Ms May failed to achieve frictionless trade in her negotiations, the government won by 307-301 votes.

On Thursday, the Vauxhall Labour party posted on its Twitter account: “Motion to censure Kate Hoey MP passes, including statement of no confidence in the MP. We also request the whip is withdrawn.”

The Constituency Labour Party (CLP) motion said: "In June 2017 Kate Hoey was elected on a manifesto which explicitly rejected Theresa May’s approach to Brexit and pledged in a letter to constituents that she endorsed Labour’s plans.

"This CLP censures Kate Hoey MP for repeatedly reneging on those commitments, and ignoring the clearly stated views of her constituents and the national and local Labour Party."

It added: "This CLP therefore requests that the leader of the Labour party and chief whip suspend Kate Hoey from the Parliamentary Labour Party and remove the whip; and that the National Executive Committee declare Kate Hoey ineligible for re-selection or endorsement as a Labour party parliamentary candidate."

In her report to the meeting, Ms Hoey said: "Whilst many of you may disagree with my views, I have voted in line with the manifesto and the result of the referendum – to leave the single market and the customs union.

"All my votes are on the issue being debated and not in support of the Government."

She also highlighted how she one of just 42 MPs who voted against the motion of no confidence in Jeremy Corbyn.

It comes another Labour Brexiteer, Frank Field, faces a similar motion by party activists in Birkenhead after showing a “total disregard” to Mr Corbyn’s efforts to topple the government.

According to The Huffington Post, the PLP of Mr Field will on Friday evening discuss an emergency motion which calls for the “immediate” withdrawal of the party whip from the well-known Labour MP.

The Labour party declined to comment.

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