Chipping Barnet challenger slams MP for not voting on Johnson suspension

Dan Tomlinson called Theresa Villiers’ failure to express a view on the House of Commons report on the former prime minister “embarrassing” reports David Floyd

Labour candidate for the Chipping Barnet constituency, Dan Tomlinson, wearing a suit with a red tie
Chipping Barnet Labour candidate, Dan Tomlinson

The Labour candidate in Chipping Barnet has criticised the current MP for her “embarrassing” decision not to take part in a parliamentary vote yesterday.

MPs were voting on the report of the House of Commons privileges committee on Boris Johnson’s statements to parliament during the ‘Partygate’ affair.

The committee found that the former prime minister had repeatedly misled the House about parties in Downing Street while Covid-19 restrictions were in place.

Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers did not take part in the vote to approve the report yesterday evening. The vote was passed by 354 to 7, with 118 Conservative MPs voting to support it.

Labour’s Dan Tomlinson, who was selected last year to oppose the incumbent at the next general election, said: “”Rishi Sunak’s decision to miss Monday’s vote is weak, but Theresa Villiers decision is even more embarrassing for us locally. We need a local MP who defends honesty and integrity in politics. Instead we’ve got one who at the first opportunity to show leadership on these issues skips the vote without explaining why to the residents of Chipping Barnet.”

He added: “Of course, sometimes MPs have legitimate reasons for being absent from Parliament, but this vote should be a high priority. If our MP was missing for a good reason, then I’d ask her to set that out and to let us know which way she would have voted on this matter of integrity.”

All three of Barnet’s Conservative MPs failed to respond to a request from Barnet Post to comment on their position on the committee report. The other two representatives – Finchley and Golders Green MP Mike Freer and Hendon MP Matthew Offord – joined their Chipping Barnet colleague in not voting yesterday. 

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