Chuka Umunna: Bob Neill labels pledge to win Tory seat ‘bitter’
The former Labour and Change UK MP told BBC Sunday Politics he was confident his party could snatch a lot of seats from the Tories in the capital at the next general election. Mr Umunna claimed the latest European elections results and polls are a clear indication the Liberal Democrats are now in for a chance of winning against the Tories in “Remain London” seats.
But in a brilliant dismantling of his claim, Conservative MP Bob Neill claimed Chuka Umunna was merely regurgitating “standard Lib Dems mantra”.
He said: “I’m not terrified because, frankly, I’ve heard a lot of that.
“It’s fairly standard Lib Dem mantra, with every respect to Chuka, that I’ve heard in my constituency times and times again.
“We get to the elections with a graph with on it ‘only the Liberal Democrats can beat the Tories here’ and they come third.
Conservative MP Bob Neill
It’s a bit of spin, with respect, that we always get from the Lib Dems
“So it’s a bit of spin, with respect, that we always get from the Lib Dems.
“But the important thing is this, general elections invariably do not turn out to be single-issue elections.”
It comes as Lib Dems members voted on Sunday in favour of new party policy to revoke Brexit in the event the party reaches a governing majority at the next general elections.
On Sunday, Liberal Democrats leader Jo Swinson said her party was hoping for a majority in Government.
Brexit: Jo Swinson accused of ‘hypocrisy’ by BBC host
She told The Andrew Marr Show: “We’re going to fight at the next election for a Liberal Democrat majority government, and for me to be Prime Minister of this country.”
Her comments reflected those of former Lid Dem leader David Steel who told his members in 1981 to “go back to your constituencies and prepare for Government.”
However, the Liberal Democrats suffered a crushing defeat in the 2017 general election.
Conservative Party chairman James Cleverly said the Lib Dems’ Brexit stance would only lead to “more delay, division and uncertainty”.
Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson
He said: “Despite calling herself a ‘democrat’, Jo Swinson’s mask has slipped and we now know that she wants to overrule one of the largest democratic votes in British history.”
The new policy received a huge amount of backlash after Ms Swinson said on ITV Good Morning Britain it would unite the British public.
One Twitter user said: “Jo Swinson has no respect for the British people because she’s going to stop Brexit if her party is elected.”
While another added: “I voted Remain but Jo Swinson has got this totally and utterly wrong.”
A third person said: “Jo Swinson has a perverse view of democracy.”