Douglas Carswell is one of the Conservatives’ most active Euro rebels. So we invited him to our View From 22 podcast to discuss this week’s leading article, which says the rebellion has descended into childish attempts to destabilise the Prime Minister. Given that he has rebelled dozens of times, we thought, he’d disagree.
To our surprise, he instead told us he has had a rather substantial change of heart — and has decided to give up rebelling. Furthermore he says that, on reflection, he regrets not only signing tomorrow’s rebel amendment on immigration but Bernard Jenkin’s letter to No.10 on EU regulation.
Towards the end of the podcast, he poses a striking question to his fellow Eurosceptic rebels:
‘What is it we now want, guys? We’re going to face a reckoning with the electorate in just over a year’s time. We’re two points behind the Labour Party. We can do this – we really can do this. If we lack discipline, we’re going to have five or six appalling years in opposition to dwell on it’
Here’s a sneak preview of what was supposed to be a debate about the wisdom of rebelling – but ended up being Carswell explaining why he believes his colleagues should now stop defying the government, and support the PM.
You can subscribe to the View from 22 through iTunes and have it delivered to your computer every week, or you can use the embedded player below:
Fraser Nelson & Douglas Carswell on rebelling Tories (from 8:38):