Friday, February 01, 2008

The Hannan affair continues to make waves.

In a comment on Dan Hannan's blog, the Tory Chief Whip in the European Parliament Denismore Dover has near accused Dan of lying. Worse still he makes what can only be seen as a vielesd threat to Dan about his being reselected for the Tories for the 2009 European elections.

Referring to Dan's statement,
My own Chief Whip, Den Dover, was kind enough to see me afterwards and reassure me that nothing I had said was against Conservative policy, that our party is strongly in favour of a referendum and that, in any case, we are all pledged to leave the EPP next year. If the EPP excluded me, he added, that was their business. As far as he was concerned, I would sit as a Conservative and a member of the Conservative delegation, in receipt of the Tory Whip and as a re-selected Tory candidate.
Mr Dover has responded thus,
"In his Article on why the EPP wants to expel him my colleague Dan Hannan MEP attributes comments to me that I would never make. What he said was nothing to do with Conservative Party policy. Our Party is indeed strongly in favour of a referendum on the so called Reform Treaty (the Constitution). We will examine all options open to us, as UK Conservative MEPs, from June 2009 but no watertight pledges are in place, or expected in the near future. Finally I reminded him that he has just been re-adopted as a Conservative Candidate for the June 2009 European Elections for the South East. However I am not the only one who decides, in the light of his ill-advised comments in the Chamber and to the Press what his future will be".
Now Den is a good bloke, and is without doubt on the eurosceptic wing of the Tory delegation. But he is also the chief whip and as such is responsible for internal discipline. There will be those, for example Beazley who will be demanding a far more stringent approach to Dan than we have seen so far.

However if the only support he gets is from Nigel Farage and Roger Helmer, and if the badly veiled threat is carried out, then it cannot be beyond the bounds of possibility that UKIP may have two committed MEPs in the South East of England after 2009.


Tony said...

I note you refer to the South East, so you must have been excluding Roger Helmer from your thinking as he is one of my East Midlands MEPs.

For what it is worth Roger stated unequivocally, in a letter replying to a UKIP supporter only recently, that he would not join UKIP as he is a Conservative and intends to remain one.

I would like to think Dan feels the same way - the grassroots are certainly behind him.

Elaib Harvey said...

Yes that was specific, it rather depends on what happens today, what Giles Chichester and the Tory party back at home do.
I would say that I am sure dan feels the same way, but if he was barred from restanding (unlikely due to the reason you point out) then I would suggest that all bets on this would be off.

Mike Wood said...

Not sure that Dan would want second place on a list headed by Farage and I'm absolutely certain that Nigel would not want to take second place on a list headed by Dan.
Whilst possibility does cover quite a broad range of outcomes, Dan has always been quite clear in his belief that UKIP is not the way to achieve his aims and I can't see him being "bought" by UKIP just for the sake of a seat in the European Parliament.

Elaib Harvey said...

But Mike, UKIP, unlike certain other parties I could mention allow the membership to choose their list placings. So neither Dan nor Nigel could prejudge the result.

However this is all unlikely stuff