Moments later he was sacked by Johnson, who counts Churchill among his heroes and has written a biography of the two-time prime minister, alongside his fellow rebels.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's plan to kick off what is in effect an election campaign casting parliament as the enemy of Brexit was overshadowed on Thursday when his younger brother quit the government, citing the national interest.
One said the party leader was "unconvincing" while another noted how there were "significant points of difference" with his colleagues. This includes Hammond, Ken Clarke, Greg Clark, David Gauke, Justine Greening, and Nicholas Soames, among others.
Meanwhile, it is said that over 20 former cabinet members, including former Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond, have already reached an agreement in private that they won't support a no-deal Brexit even if a snap election is called, and that they will form an independent Conservative Party and run in the next election if they are deselected by Johnson. Labour figures said the party wanted a general election but stopping a no-deal Brexit was its priority.
MPs will now vote on the Brexit delay bill.
On Tuesday night he was being presented with GQ magazine's politician of the year award when he received a text message saying he'd been expelled from the party.
As Johnson addressed the chamber, Lee silently crossed the room and took a seat with the opposition Liberal Democrats under a heavy rain of jeers and cheers from his fellow members of Parliament.
"You think that this is a planned deliberate attempt to reshape the Conservative Party?"
"I can confirm that we are tonight tabling a motion under the Fixed Term Parliament Act".
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson suffered a series of damaging defeats over the government's policy on leaving the European Union.
British Conservative Party lawmaker Nicholas Soames leaves 10 Downing Street in London, Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019.
This means that they can not stand for the Conservative Party at a general election. With the purge of Conservative MPs, Johnson may lack the votes to proceed without Corbyn's approval. He has previously said that Britain would leave the European Union by October 31, whether a deal was reached or not.
Business minister Kwasi Kwarteng has defended the Prime Minister's decision to expel rebel MPs who voted against the government yesterday. "Now 21 of them out of 312 - that is about six per cent - chose to vote against the Government and they had the whip withdrawn", he said.
"I am truly very sad that it should end in this way. But you can not have people standing as Conservative MPs when they are against the Government's policy on the key issue of the day".