Bexhill and Battle MP Huw Merriman said he disagreed with his neighbouring MP’s decision to resign from the Conservative party.
Hastings and Rye MP Amber Rudd announced her resignation from the cabinet, as well as Work and Pensions Secretary on Saturday evening, before confirming she will not stand in Hastings and Rye at the next General Election.
Ms Rudd said the main reason for her resignation was that she could not ‘stand by as good, loyal moderate Conservatives are expelled’ – referring to the 21 MPs who were ousted by Boris Johnson for voting against the government.
In response, Mr Merriman said he disagreed with Ms Rudd on this issue and said he felt it was best to fight his corner while ‘remaining in the ring’.
Mr Merriman said: “I am sorry that Amber is standing down. We’ve combined forces to campaign for local matters across our constituencies and she’s one of the talents in our party.
“I’ll miss her if she is no longer the MP for Hastings and Rye but we disagree on this issue. I’ve been a member of my party for almost 30 years, through the good times and the challenges.
“I feel best able to fight my corner by remaining in the ring.”
In a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, which she also tweeted, Ms Rudd said: “It is with great sadness that I am resigning as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Minister for Women and Equalities.”
On Wednesday, a spokesman for Ms Rudd’s parliamentary office confirmed she will ‘not stand against the Hastings and Rye Conservative Association and their parliamentary candidate if there is a General Election’.