CCHQ to Impose Candidates on Associations

CCHQ has imposed emergency by-election rules on candidate selections to bypass standard Tory association procedures, Guido can reveal. In opposition-held key target seats and retirement seats where a Tory MP is standing down, CCHQ will impose shortlists of three candidates chosen centrally by the party chairman and his team. Association members will then choose their candidate from the centrally imposed shortlist of three. This is a departure from the standard procedure, which usually allows associations a much wider choice of up to 20 candidates. Large associations like Tatton may well resent the lack of choice and the CCHQ-approved candidates they end up with…

MPs who wish to stand again will have to face their associations. If the MP doesn’t secure a simple majority of association members they will face off against two CCHQ-imposed candidates.

Candidates who stood in key target seats in 2015 can apply to be fast-tracked to stand again in the same seat. Though this has to be approved by both CCHQ and the association chairman. Any broken bridges will not be forgotten…

For opposition-held non-target seats, associations will be bypassed completely and one candidate will be imposed. Novel levels of professionalism from CCHQ – impressive to get this out so quickly. Though some associations will not be happy at the centralised control…




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Stephen Bush writing in the New Statesman‘s morning briefing…

“The terrifying truth is that the Opposition is too divided – within the parliamentary party, within the trades unions, within the Shadow Cabinet and even within the leader’s office – to be anything other than a veto player as far as Brexit goes, and the party’s whole gambit is really about trying to make that weakness look like a strength. Keir Starmer saying that Labour is “increasingly likely” to vote down the deal is simply a reflection of the fact that the one thing the Labour party will be able to agree on as far as Brexit goes is that Theresa May’s deal is no good.”

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