Boris Johnson to hand peerages to expelled Tories Ken Clarke and Phillip Hammond

PUBLISHED: 09:30 06 February 2020 | UPDATED: 09:32 06 February 2020

Ken Clarke, former Tory MP, in the House of Commons. Photograph: Parliament TV.

Ken Clarke, former Tory MP, in the House of Commons. Photograph: Parliament TV.

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Boris Johnson is reportedly planning to nominate expelled Tory politicians Ken Clarke and Phillip Hammond - despite kicking them out of the party when they voted against the government over a no-deal Brexit.

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The two former chancellors, who rebelled against the government to back the Benn act to stop a no-deal Brexit, reportedly could be elevated to the House of Lords.

The pro-EU politicians both stepped down at the last election after Boris Johnson expelled them from the party along with 21 other MPs.

Hammond was once a chancellor under Theresa May, while Clarke was chancellor to John Major. They had both been critical of Boris Johnson's Brexit strategy before the 2019 general election.

Former Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson is also expected to receive a peerage as part of the dissolution honours list.

Meanwhile Johnson is proposing peerages for Corbyn critics Ian Austin and John Woodcock, both repeatedly spoke out against the Labour leadership, and urged voters not to back the party in the last election.

A notable absence from the list again is former speaker John Bercow, who would be the first in 230 years not to automatically receive a peerage.

There had been reports that Labour were proposing elevating the former speaker instead, breaking with another convention by nominating a former politician of another party.

Bercow used The New European to criticise the govrnment's opposition to a peerage.

He told the newspaper: "It's not exactly consistent with all of this talk from the government of bringing everyone together and letting bygones be
bygones."

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