British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has knocked 21 members of Parliament from his Conservative Party after they stood against him in his first House of Commons vote on Tuesday, putting in motion what will be the third general election in four years. Nearly all of the MPs who joined opposition lawmakers in voting for a bill that would prevent a potentially economically damaging, no-deal Brexit that Johnson had promised to deliver if no other agreement was reached by Oct. 31 are former government ministers, reports Business Insider, noting the grandson of Winston Churchill—Johnson's political hero—is among the 21 ejected MPs with more than 330 years of combined parliamentary experience.
Nicholas Soames' expulsion came "after 37 years as a Conservative MP," but "I knew what I was doing," Churchill's grandson says, per the Washington Post, adding he will not run for re-election. Johnson, now leading a minority government, will on Wednesday seek the approval of his remaining MPs to hold a general election in October. It's "a great pity … that this has, in my view, all been planned," says Soames. "It's the Brexit Party, rebadged," says former Chancellor Ken Clarke—who is "the longest continuously sitting British lawmaker in the House of Commons" and another of the MPs to lose the Conservative whip, per Reuters. Former Chancellor Philip Hammond, meanwhile, has promised Johnson "the fight of a lifetime." (Read more Brexit stories.)