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MP Yeo pins hopes on his party rank and file
11:00am Sunday 15th December 2013 in News
TORY MP Tim Yeo’s political future will be decided by a postal vote of party members in his constituency.
The MP says he will abide by the decision of South Suffolk Conservatives Constituency Association's 600 members when they are polled in January.
Voting papers are expected to be sent out on to members in the constituency, which includes East Bergholt and Brantham, on January 20.
Mr Yeo, 68, lives in East Bergholt, is Suffolk’s longest-serving MP, having been in the House for 30 years.
Earlier this month senior members of his constituency association decided not to re-select Mr Yeo to stand at the next election.
The MP was recently investigated by the Parliamentary watchdog over lobbying allegations.
He was cleared and has been reinstated as chairman of the influential Commons Energy and Climate Change Committee.
However, the constituency party’s decision not to re-adopt him as candidate has led to speculation his high-profile support for action to prevent climate change may be behind moves to unseat him.
In his first statement since local party officials decided they didn’t want him to stand again, Mr Yeo said he had consulted widely among local Conservatives and many had expressed support for him.
“He added: “They want to vote on whether I should be their candidate at the next election.
“I believe they should now have that chance. Under the rules of the Conservative Party, a postal ballot, whose outcome will be binding, can be held for this purpose.
“Arrangements for this ballot are now being made and voting papers will be sent to party members on January 20.
“I am delighted more 600 party members are eligible to vote in this ballot.
“Whatever their decision, I will continue to work hard to secure a Conservative victory in South Suffolk, as I have done ever since I was first chosen as the candidate for this constituency.”
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