Nadine Dorries didn’t just quit because of snubs by snobs

Nadine Dorries Reveals Why She Decided To Step Down With ‘Immediate Effect’

The body language of a very emotional Nadine Dorries explaining her decision to quit on Talk TV spoke volumes even as she tried to measure her words.

There was a recoil of disgust at one point when Rishi Sunak was mention and it often seemed she was containing herself while being on the edge of apoplectic fury.

However, the key words were when she admitted that she had discussed her options with Boris Johnson over the last 24 hours.

Then when pressed whether he might follow suit she declined to rule it out.

In the wake of the chaos unleashed by Ms Dorries, allies of Mr Johnson made it clear to the Daily Express that her decision to quit was not just the act of a woman who is fed-up and no longer feels she can support the party led by a man she and others hate.

A former senior minister pointed to the briefings against Ms Dorries in recent days by team Sunak through the usual channels.

And there was a hint that other MPs loyal to Mr Johnson are also looking at whether they too want to quit.

“We have to force this disgraceful government to collapse,” one Boris ally told the Daily Express.

“Enough is enough,” said another.

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We should not ignore the hurt that Ms Dorries will have felt at the snobbery which saw her being blocked as a member of the Lords.

She has always been the target of such snobs and on occasions turned it around to great effect, such as the time she ponted out that public school boys David Cameron and George Osborne “wouldn’t know the price of a pint of milk”.

Coming from poverty in Liverpool and making a success on her own as a nurse, businesswoman, author and politician is no mean feat and certainly makes her more deserving of a place in the Lords than most who end up there.

But the wider context of what is going on here cannot be ignored in how this has played out.

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There are genuine questions about what the Sunak government stands for and it has not escaped everyone’s notice that so many of the reforms of the Johnson government which won the 2019 election have been ripped up.

Just as Ms Dorries was quitting, the government put in amendments to the Lords to the Northern Ireland Legacy Bill which will mean veterans can still be pursued for alleged crimes during the Troubles.

Before that the Retained EU Law Bill was watered down, again in the Lords. Doing it this way means MPs cannot unpick the amendments.

Priti Patel’s Nationality and Borders Bill has been ditched as has Ms Dorries’ Online Safety Bill and privatisation of Channel 4.

There has been a battle going on for the soul of the Conservative Party now for months, Ms Dorries’ act needs to be seen in that context not just the act of an individual who is exhausted and fed up.

There are just a few weeks to the summer recess but it could feel like a long time for Mr Sunak as he tries to keep a grip on his party.

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