Conservatives plot to ditch John Bercow for Frank Field

Commons Speaker John Bercow faces a new plot to oust him by Conservative MPs who want to install Labour MP Frank Field instead.

Senior Tory backbenchers will try to kick the Speaker out if they win the General Election, defying calls by David Cameron to drop the matter.

They resent the way fellow Conservative Mr Bercow was imposed on them when Labour backbenchers voted for him this year, apparently to annoy the Tory leadership.

John Bercow
Frank Field

Right meets left: John Bercow could be ousted from his Commons Speaker seat if the Conservatives get their way and install Labour's Frank Field

Mr Bercow has antagonised them further by slapping down respected Tory MPs in the Commons Chamber, while his wife Sally has publicly criticised Mr Cameron and announced plans to stand as a Labour MP.

Mr Bercow is already facing an electoral challenge in his Buckingham constituency from former UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage, who has broken the convention that Speakers are elected unopposed.

John Bercow

Antagonistic: John Bercow's wife Sally has further infuriated the Tories by announcing plans to stand as a Labour MP

A backbench Tory ex-minister said that if Mr Bercow does hold his seat, Tory MPs are determined to do a 'reverse Bercow' by electing Mr Field, who is unpopular with Labour MPs for criticising the Government.

'There will be considerable support for Frank and many on our benches think he would be a more suitable speaker and reassuring figure for the public,' one senior Tory said. 'Electing Frank would give Labour MPs a taste of their own medicine.'

Backbench heavyweight Christopher Chope has been identified by Tory whips as a ringleader of the plot.

Former shadow home secretary David Davis is said to view an election to oust Mr Bercow as desirable.

A former Tory minister said: 'John Bercow is going to need his Tory friends in the months to come. He's got to be more careful about how he slaps people down in the chamber.'

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