Controversial MP Nadine Dorries was suspended from the Conservative Party last night for signing up to a reality TV show.
Conservative HQ released a statement following news the Mid Beds MP was jetting off to Australia to appear in ITV’s I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here.
It is believed the MP may not have told party seniors about her plans.
A spokesman for the party said: “Sir George Young has suspended the whip from Nadine Dorries. He will have an urgent meeting with her when she gets back.
“The concern is that she will not be doing parliamentary or constituency business in the mean time.”
Taking part in the ITV show would require the Tory MP, who covers Harlington, Toddington, and Barton, to be away from her constituency for a month, and she is the first serving MP to take part in the programme.
Her decision to take part prompted an emergency meeting of senior Conservative party officials in her Mid Beds constituency last night.
The 55-year-old could be paid up to £40,000 for taking part in the reality TV show, on top of her MP’s salary, which could be up to £6,000 for a month.
She claimed the show is watched by 16 million people, and told the Daily Mail she will be able to speak about issues she is interested in on the show.
Deputy leader of Luton Borough Council, Sian Timoney, said on Twitter: “I predict that Dorries, when evicted from jungle after showing the nation what a t**t she is, will claim editing was unfair.”
The reality TV show involves so-called celebrities camping in the Australian jungle and taking part in tasks such as eating insects and bungee-jumping to earn food and camp luxuries.
Members of the public vote for who they want to take part in the tasks, and for who they want to stay on the show.
Senior officials at the Mid Beds Conservative constituency said yesterday they had not had confirmation from the MP or anyone else that she is taking part in the programme.
The show starts on Sunday and will also feature former Coronation Street actress Helen Flanagan, reality TV star Hugo Taylor, Birds of a Feather actress Linda Robson, comedian Brian Conley, and former Doctor Who actor Colin Baker.
What do you think?
Your views from Facebook and Twitter:
Terry Hyde: “She should be sacked, if any normal person left her job for a month they would be sacked, just another MP taking liberties.”
Neil Jones: “How can she represent the people of Bedfordshire? She should step down if she wants to do this.”
Robbie Gee: “Nadine Dorries munching cockroaches – what’s not to like?”
Ruth Mead: “That is disgusting - she has been voted in by the general public and should be serving the people that have voted her in! Her place is not to be on some game show! Outrageous!”
Ian Ellis: “Can’t she seek celebrity by introducing good policy? Or is this recognition of her inability to succeed in her chosen field?
“Failed twice by my mind – she’s no celebrity and no longer a proper politician.”