Former Tory minister Sam Gyimah has this evening joined the Liberal Democrats. He was one of 21 MPs who had the Tory whip withdrawn for voting against a no deal Brexit.
Gyimah’s decision to join the Lib Dems comes despite news that the Tory rebels are being encouraged to appeal their suspensions. In a statement announcing his decision to join the Lib Dems, he describes prime minister Boris Johnson as a “populist”.
Gyimah held a number of government roles, including higher education minister. He stood for the Tory leadership following Theresa May’s resignation, but dropped out before the first round of MPs’ votes.
As the MP for East Surrey, Gyimah increased his majority at the 2017 general election. The Lib Dems came third in East Surrey in 2017, with only 10.5% of the vote.
Prior to votes on anti no deal legislation earlier this month, Philip Lee MP left the Tories to join the Lib Dems.