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    5. Conservative HQ 'drops Sunak's allies to safety'

    Politics

    Conservative HQ 'drops Sunak's allies to safety'

    Conservative HQ is trying to stitch safe seats in favor of pro-Rishi Sunak candidates, a senior Tory claims. Credit: Jordan Pettitt/

    Conservative HQ is trying to 'prepare' safe seats for 'Blue Prince' candidates linked to Rishi Sunak, claims a senior Tory.

    Right-wing supporters of the party claimed that the Tory campaign headquarters had identified a number of “centrist” current and former government advisers who were “imposed” on associations seeking a candidate in the next election.

    Allegations. were vehemently refuted by sources at Conservative headquarters who insisted that the party acted on “equal and fair terms for all applicants”.

    But two former cabinet ministers also said that candidates with more traditional conservative views are being denied an “approved” list of individuals who can apply for any vacant seat. Other candidates are limited in the number of seats they can apply for by being placed in the second and third of the three “tiers”. potential MPs on the list.

    One of the former cabinet ministers said: "The government is not only pursuing an agenda that is hardly recognizable as conservative, but the center is now trying to push elected aides to certain places.

    “The bad news is that Rishi raised spending and taxes to unprecedented levels and failed to reap the benefits of Brexit without cluttering up the parliamentary party with another tranche of interventionists and social democrats.”

    1305 The intention of voting in the national parliament over the past year

    “Trying to impose these types of candidates on local associations will only make it harder for the party to rediscover its true values ​​and become electorally attractive again.”

    A second former cabinet minister added: “There are some places that should be hotly contested, but I don't think they will be. It is understood that the center is creating a VIP list of loyalists and they are going to try to score associations with it. Associations will have to stand up for themselves, fight back and say: “We don't need sycophants Rishi Sunak, we need hard-working deputies who will defend the interests of local residents.” "

    Another Tory source described the supposedly preferred candidates as “blue princes”. – going back to the New Labor period in government, when a number of high-profile Labor children such as Jack Straw and Lord Prescott were running for seats in Parliament.

    A Conservative HQ source insisted: "Membership is at the heart of our process. Decisions in and around the selection of candidates remain with the members. We have an open and transparent system.

    "Some people will be disappointed with the results of screened meetings, but local representatives will have to make difficult decisions in the context of a very talented pool of applicants"

    But MPs and activists argue that Conservative headquarters mainly exercise its influence in two ways: by pushing or silencing candidates in the “weeding out”; meetings with local associations, as well as placing objectionable applicants in two rows of candidates, which deprive them of their “overall” status; access to qualifying competitions.

    One of the association's representatives who recently attended the selection meeting said that this or that candidate was pushed by party officials who said that “this person did very well in the interview.” She has top marks…we can't confuse her, she's great.

    Last month, an initial tranche of 19 seats was opened for applications from those who are looking to become MPs in areas where there is no MP or the Conservative candidate. Among them are several seats allegedly claimed by allies of Mr. Sunak.

    One of those on the list of candidates said, “I was told that if you don't kiss the ring of the upper management at No. 10 and CCHQ, you won't get a seat.” 34;

    The chairman of the association said: "There seems to be some centralization of power away from the associations, which is unhealthy. Local members shall be responsible for selecting candidates from their own selection. "

    Another chairman of the association, who held one of the 19 seats in the selection process, said that so far: "there was no pressure on us at all to select candidates", but that the official "screening" Meeting with the Central Office of the Conservatives. "We would resist being told what to do most decisively" said the chairman.

    Claire Bullivant, executive director of the Conservative Democratic Organization, said: “Associations should be able to choose their preferred parliamentary candidates with minimal interference from the CCHQ.”

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