Boris Johnson will be hoping the class of 2019 - the intake of Tory MPs he will hope will enter Parliament later this year if he is able to call a general election - will be considerably more reliable than some of their predecessors.
The Conservative Party has traditionally had difficulty finding candidates for all 650 constituencies in the country but there will be no shortage of applicants for the 21 seats where rebel Tories face deselection.
1. Without the Whip, you cannot be selected as a Tory PPC.— Populist Jacquerie (@PJacquerie) September 4, 2019
2. Hammond has had the Whip removed.
3. Ergo, sans the Whip, Hammond is toast.
5. As ye sow, so shall ye reap.
6. Got your P45? Good.
7. Now sling your hook. https://t.co/TSrwXcegTD
Several of the Tory rebels have already said they will bow out at the next election, including Ken Clarke, Justine Greening, Oliver Letwin, Guto Bebb, Nick Boles, Alastair Burt and Sir Nicholas Soames.
Greening’s seat in Putney, south west London, will be a crucial marginal. When a Tory candidate is selected they will be up against it to defend the seat - where Greening had a 1,500 majority in 2017 - against Labour’s Fleur Anderson, who will doubtless seek to persuade Lib Dems to vote for her as a Remainer.
How do these people get selected? Not that it’s important any more as we see the death throes of the Tory party, but they really should look at its candidate selection procedures. https://t.co/MKOWHgVDXK— Victoria Deakin (@vldcym) September 8, 2019
There are also around 50 safe Conservative seats up for grabs as a general election gets closer.
Several Tory MPs, including Boris’s brother Jo Johnson, are stepping down.
The list includes Caroline Spelman, Michael Fallon, Nick Hurd, Keith Simpson, Glyn Davies, Jeremy Lefroy, Claire Perry, Mark Prisk and David Jones.
Justine Greening held Putney with a majority of <2k from Labour in 2017. She’s a Remainer who represents a constituency that voted c.75% Remain in 2017. Good luck to the now hard right/hard Brexit Tories on replacing her and holding on to Putney...— Dr Owain Connors🇪🇺🏴 (@OwainConnors) September 3, 2019
Also standing down is the Speaker, John Bercow, who was first elected as a Conservative MP in Buckingham in 1997. The constituency, just north of London, is a very safe Tory seat.
Many of the outgoing MPs are or will soon be old age pensioners and Mr Johnson is thought to be keen to hire more young MPs, especially photogenic females.
The Johnson and Johnson debacle is so ludicrous I'm tempted to put a fiver on Jo Johnson replacing his ridiculous brother as prime minister because that's the sort of thing that apparently happens in this timeline.— Once upon a time, there was a giraffe. It sneezed. (@little_snows) September 5, 2019
Among those he may try to persuade to stand are his girlfriend Carrie Symonds, a former Conservative Party press officer, Karren Brady, businesswoman and CEO of Premier League football team West Ham, and Emily Hewertson a “Brexit party girl” who went viral when she videoed herself watching the European election results earlier this year.
Last week Dr Luke Evans, an NHS doctor from Oxfordshire, was selected as the Conservative candidate in Bosworth, Leicestershire, where he will be defending a whopping 18,000 majority.
Absolutely honoured to have been selected last night as the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for #Bosworth - thank you to all who attended - I wont let you down. Ready to work hard to do my absolute best for the people of Bosworth. #letsgetstarted pic.twitter.com/0QGOdtWV7R— Dr Luke Evans (@drlukeevans) September 6, 2019
He replaces David Tredinnick, a former army officer who is retiring after representing the area since 1987.
The Liberal Democrats have already criticised the new candidate.
The leader of the Lib Dem-run council, Stuart Bray, told the Leicester Mercury: “The last MP was parachuted in from outside and achieved little for the area. Now they have picked a man from Abingdon who’s stood and lost in other constituencies before ending up here. Hard-working local councillors have been stepped over and they have picked someone with no record of action here. Having topped the poll in May’s local elections, and finished ahead of both the Conservatives and Labour Party in the recent Euro elections, local Lib Dems relish the chance to fight a General Election campaign here.”
In Bosworth, local residents were allowed to choose the candidate but with time so short it is thought that CCHQ - the Conservative Party’ head office - will draw up shortlists or even pick the candidates themselves.
The downside of such a process is that local Conservative Party associations might feel candidates have been “parachuted” in, but the advantage is that the new MPs would owe their jobs to head office and Mr Johnson in particular and could be expected to be particularly loyal.
We can’t give the two old parties permission to silence and push moderates out of politics. I will fight for the values I believe in, and help create a real alternative, as a Liberal Democrat @LibDems pic.twitter.com/uVHzrEFZlZ— Sam Gyimah MP (@SamGyimah) September 15, 2019
Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act the next general election should not be until May 2022 but with the government having lost its majority, and 20 former Tory MPs now sitting as independents, Boris Johnson is keen to go to the country and see if he can get a majority big enough to allow him to govern and push on with his agenda.
With the greatest of respect to Sam Gyimah (who he?) who defected to the Lib-Dems and whom the meeja like referring to as "a contender for the leadership of the Conservative Party", he could only muster 3 supporters and so did not even qualify to get into the first ballot!— Michael Fabricant 🇬🇧 (@Mike_Fabricant) September 15, 2019
One of the seats he will be hoping to gain from Labour is Kensington, in affluent west London, where Emma Dent-Coad pulled off a huge shock in 2017 to win by a mere 20 votes.
Ms Dent-Coad, an unashamed republican who has made clear her opinion about the Royal Family, has been praised for her work in highlighting the treatment of residents of the Grenfell Tower fire.
Interesting fight ahead in Kensington after @RabinaKhan (ex Lutfurite, now enemy) selected for LibDems. Will be up against @emmadentcoad who has majority of 20 for Lab, and Brexiteer @FelicityBuchan for Tories. Libs distant 3rd in 2017 but Kensington v Remain; chance for Rabina?— Ted Jeory (@TedJeory) September 12, 2019
But this time she will be up against Felicity Buchan, who was selected as the Tory candidate in July.
Ms Buchan, who works in financial services and has lived in Kensington for 25 years, stood as the Tory candidate in the Labour stronghold of South Shields in 2017.
Ms Dent-Coad will be hoping some of the 5,000 Liberal Democrat voters at the 2017 election will switch strategically to her to avoid letting the Tories back in.