Cameron hails “bravery” of defecting MP

Sarah Wollaston
Sarah Wollaston
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DAVID Cameron has praised the “bravery” of a Conservative MP who revealed she has shifted her support from Leave to Remain in the EU referendum campaign.

Former GP Sarah Wollaston faced a wave of criticism from pro-Leave Conservatives yesterday after the announced her change of heart.

Dr Wollaston, who chairs the Health Select Committee in the commons, told of her father’s recent treatment by the NHS and her conversations with him over the EU’s role in maintaining peace in Europe.

Mr Cameron told The Yorkshire Post: “Sarah came to see me to tell me what she thought and I think what she said was very moving.

“It takes a lot of bravery because politicians don’t really like changing our minds and don’t like changing our minds publicly and she’d taken a very public position and she’d really thought about it.

“The story she told about her father and her son and her thinking about it I thought was very moving and very brave and I think it will make a lot of people stop and think.

“It takes a lot of courage to do that.”

Announcing her decision in The Times yesterday, Dr Wollaston criticised Leave for its repeated claims that Britain sends £350m a week to the UK, a figure deemed inaccurate by the UK Statistics Authority.

Dr Wollaston said Leave had implied leaving the EU would trigger a “financial bonanza” for the NHS but it was “an empty promise and one which would soon backfire”.

The Prime Minister added: “I think when you’ve got the chairman of the health select committee saying this is inaccurate and wrong and crucially saying they know its wrong but they go on using it because they want to encourage a debate about it, I thought that was very very telling.”