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Northern Ireland Affairs Committee chair Simon Hoare brands former Brexit negotiator Lord Frost a ‘failed minister’

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Lord David Frost, Minister of State at the Cabinet Office, speaks during the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. Picture date: Monday October 4, 2021.

Lord David Frost, Minister of State at the Cabinet Office, speaks during the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. Picture date: Monday October 4, 2021.

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Simon Hoare

Simon Hoare

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Lord David Frost, Minister of State at the Cabinet Office, speaks during the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. Picture date: Monday October 4, 2021.

The chairman of the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee in Westminster has slammed former Brexit negotiator Lord Frost as a “failed minister”, after he waded into the Conservative Party leadership contest.

Simon Hoare was responding on Twitter to an ITV news article about David Frost and the former Brexit Minister’s call for candidate Kemi Badenoch to pull out of the race for leadership in favour of Liz truss.

Writing in the Daily Telegraph newspaper, the 57-year-old – who regularly dealt with issues around the NI Protocol – said it was “time for pragmatism” and added that candidates in the Tory Party leadership race should pull out so there can be “unity among free marketeers”.

“Kemi and Suella Braverman set out convincing programmes, with differing emphases, for change,” Lord Frost said.

“But Liz’s depth of experience, her energy and ideas – as well as the simple fact she has the most votes of the three – put her in the lead.

“It is now time for pragmatism. I urge Kemi to stand down in return for a serious job in a Truss administration.”

In an increasing sign of the rising tension in the leadership race, the chair of the Commons Northern Ireland Select Committee criticised Lord Frost for getting involved.

“I don’t wish to be rude but who the hell is an unelected, failed minister to tell any MP what to do?” Mr Hoare tweeted.

“For some unknown reason David Frost perpetually thinks we give a flying xxxx what he thinks. We don’t and we won’t.”

It marks the second social media spat Mr Hoare has been involved in within the past 24-hours.

On Thursday, Mr Hoare called Lord Moylan - a Brexiteer member of the House of Lords – a “GradeA idiot”.

Lord Moylan, who has been a vocal critic of the NI Protocol and who holds British and Irish citizenship, tweeted: “We’re on the path to getting two final candidates who’ll endanger Brexit: one because he doesn’t care about it, one because she doesn’t understand it.”

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Simon Hoare

Simon Hoare

Simon Hoare

In response, the Tory committee chair wrote: “You really are a GradeA idiot.”

Lord Moylan told the Evening Standard that if either Rishi Sunak or Penny Mordaunt were elected as Tory leader and Prime Minister then there would be a danger that Brexit would not be completed.

The peer, who was deputy chair of Transport for London when Boris Johnson was London Mayor, had backed Suella Braverman, a member of the Brexit spartans, the hardline group of Tories who campaigned for a hard break with the EU.

However, Ms Braverman was eliminated in the second round of voting yesterday.

Lord Moylan said: “The difficulty is we have a partly complete Brexit because Northern Ireland is partly under EU control.

“There are a number of really talented, capable candidates with fresh faces and fresh ideas how to carry through constructive conservatism. They include Suella and Kemi but the tragedy is these people aren’t getting through.”

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