The Conservative Party is in a sorry state
as plain packaging passes

I can’t claim we weren’t expecting it. All reports had suggested today’s vote in the House of Commons on plain packaging for tobacco products would pass. But when we heard the news, and the full extent of Conservative MPs voting in favour of this illiberal measure became clear, we were gutted.

We believe that freedom of choice and individual responsibility are key amongst the values that make society better for everyone. We believe that every man (and woman) should live according to his own judgement. And that government should be small, with a purpose to serve people & their liberty – not tell them what to do or try to micro-manage their lives.

Yes, smoking is harmful. I advise you not to do it. But show me an adult in Britain who does not know the harm! This is not a matter of ignorance or people being coerced into smoking. This is about adults, in full possession of the facts, choosing to smoke because they enjoy it.

Public health campaigners and now, I despair at it, Conservative MPs, don’t like that. Let’s think about what that means. Government is working against individual choice and legal business just because it disapproves of the activity some people are choosing. This should concern everyone who wants to live by their own judgements and choices, not just smokers.

Conservatives for Liberty is formed of people who are passionate defenders of freedom and liberty. We think that our ideals have the best and most promising home in the Conservative Party. We continue to believe that. But this vote has shown us how steep the hill to climb and how hard the battle to fight are going to be.

Today we are ashamed of the MPs who stand with the name Conservative and yet voted for this illiberal measure.

And we thank those – listed below – who voted as true Conservatives, and voted in line with the principles of freedom and liberty.

Adams, Nigel
Amess, David
Baker, Steve
Baldwin, Harriett
Bebb, Guto
Bellingham, Henry
Bingham, Andrew
Bone, Peter
Bradley, Karen
Brady, Graham
Bray, Angie
Bridgen, Andrew
Burley, Aidan
Burns, Conor
Chope, Christopher
Clarke, Kenneth
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey
Coffey, Thérèse
Collins, Damian
Davies, David
Davies, Glyn
de Bois, Nick
Dinenage, Caroline
Djanogly, Jonathan
Doyle-Price, Jackie
Drax, Richard
Duddridge, James
Duncan, Alan
Elphicke, Charlie
Evans, Jonathan
Evans, Nigel
Fabricant, Michael
Field, Mark
Fox, Liam
Francois, Mark
Fuller, Richard
Garnier, Edward
Garnier, Mark
Gray, James
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian
Gummer, Ben
Halfon, Robert
Hands, Greg
Harper, Mark
Harrington, Richard
Hart, Simon
Hayes, John
Heaton-Harris, Chris
Henderson, Gordon
Hendry, Charles
Herbert, Nick
Hollingbery, George
Hollobone, Philip
Howarth, Gerald
Jenkin, Bernard
Johnson, Gareth
Kawczynski, Daniel
Kirby, Simon
Knight, Greg
Kwarteng, Kwasi
Leigh, Edward
Lewis, Julian
Liddell-Grainger, Ian
Macleod, Mary
Main, Anne
McCartney, Karl
McIntosh, Anne
McVey, Esther
Metcalfe, Stephen
Mills, Nigel
Morris, David
Mosley, Stephen
Murray, Sheryll
Neill, Robert
Nuttall, David
Ottaway, Richard
Paice, James
Parish, Neil
Pawsey, Mark
Percy, Andrew
Pincher, Christopher
Prisk, Mark
Redwood, John
Rees-Mogg, Jacob
Robathan, Andrew
Rosindell, Andrew
Skidmore, Chris
Spencer, Mark
Stevenson, John
Stewart, Bob
Stewart, Iain
Sturdy, Julian
Syms, Robert
Truss, Elizabeth
Tyrie, Andrew
Uppal, Paul
Walker, Charles
Wallace, Ben
Watkinson, Angela
Wheeler, Heather
Whittaker, Craig
Whittingdale, John
Wiggin, Bill