Rob Roberts scandal made it difficult to find Conservative candidates in Flintshire, party website suggests
The scandals around MP Rob Roberts made it difficult for the Welsh Conservatives to find sufficient candidates for council elections in the Flintshire, a leading Conservative website has suggested.
Conservative Home noted that the Tories were only fighting 20% of seats in Flintshire and suggested that this is because of the scandal surrounding the disgraced Delyn MP.
Rob Roberts lost the Conservative party whip in 2021 after an independent panel found that he had acted inappropriately after he sought to engage in a relationship with a male member of his staff. However, he has refused to resign as an MP, sitting instead as an independent.
Writing on Conservative Home, the deputy editor Henry Hill noted that the number of Conservative candidates in the competitive ‘red wall’ area was not as high as expected.
“Local sources say that it is often simply difficult to find sufficient candidates when every seat is being contested at once,” he said.
“But there are also more obvious challenges. In Flintshire, where the Tories are fighting only 20 per cent of available seats, they think it would have been very different without the scandals surrounding Rob Roberts, the MP for Delyn, and the hairs-breadth miss of Alyn and Deeside in 2019.”
Flintshire Council aligns with the boundaries of two sets, Delyn and Alyn and Deeside. The latter retained a Labour MP at the 2019 election by just over 200 votes.
However, the council is Labour-dominated and controlled, with 34 Labour members to just six Conservatives whose group is the same size as the Lib Dems’.
Rob Roberts has shown no intention of giving up his fight to regain the Conservative whip, launching a full-throated support to the Prime Minister over the partygate affair.
He said: “Delivery is key. The Prime Minister delivers. He delivered on Brexit. He delivered with furlough and with the self-employment income support scheme, which ensured that businesses were able to survive.”
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