"Up to 70 Conservative MPs are to join a new group dedicated to "reversing the process" of closer European Union integration in a move likely to place fresh strain on the coalition"; writes Patrick Hennessy in The Telegraph. Reporting that the new grouping is being formed by three Tory MPs; George Eustice, Chris Heaton-Harris and Andrea Leadsom; Hennessy quotes George Eustice:
"We think it might be helpful if we set up an informal group of like-minded MPs who could come together to talk, receive regular quality topical briefings, exchange ideas and, indeed, provide support and helpful advice to the government. The political objective of the group would be to reverse the process of ever-closer union [....] There is a lot of interest in such a group. It aims to be constructive and the ensure that we make the most of the opportunity presented by a Eurosceptic PM and a changing context in Europe."
This article lists what are termed "Ten Tories to follow from the 2010 intake", namely; Rominic Raab, Tracey Crouch, Priti Patel, Chris Heaton-Harris, George Eustice, Andrea Leadsom, Anna Soubry, Kwasi Kwarteng, Matthew Hancock and Claire Perry.
Courtesy of TheyWorkForYou we can examine the voting records for each of these supposed Eurosceptic MPs:
The method of grading how an MP votes is explained in the links and the view may be held that this 'grading' is not particularly good, however if the term Eurosceptic is taken to mean being against EU membership, then support for the government on any matter EU is not being 'Eurosceptic'. With this article by Patrick Hennessy, it is logical to assume that the term 'Eurosceptic' is being stretched a tad?
As for Eustice's assertion that it is a good time to make the most of a Eurosceptic Prime Minister - George Eustice must be starting another career as a comedian!
Update: Richard North has a 'take' on this story.......