Conservative Diary

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Graham Brady for Chairman of the 1922

In endorsing Graham Brady for the Chairmanship of the 1922 I'm not saying that Richard Ottaway is not a good candidate. His Platform piece last week was a perfectly-pitched job application. He has also demonstrated independence of mind in questioning the 55% threshold.

My endorsement of Graham Brady is a positive not a negative statement.

I know Graham and know him to be a man of integrity and personal kindness. He'll be there for MPs when they need help and support as well as leadership.

He has served the party in many ways. As a backbencher. On a select committee. As PPS to a party leader (Michael Howard). And as frontbencher.

He is man of principle - resigning from the frontbench over grammar schools - but is not a troublemaker - staying loyal to David Cameron after his resignation.

David Cameron has an iron grip on most of the Conservative Party. Lifelong friends form the core of his Downing Street staff. Another lifelong friend is the new Co-Chairman of the party. We need an independent voice as Chairman of the '22 but not someone who will be voicing every thought to the nation's newspapers and broadcasters. I hope that Graham Brady will triumph in tonight's contest.

Tim Montgomerie

11.15am Janet Daley: The Tory party needs Graham Brady.


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