Here are the best responses from MPs to the government's decision to expand Heathrow

 
Mark Sands
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Boris Johnson MP Announces He Will Not Run For Conservative Party Leader
Zac Goldsmith has told his constituency he intends to resign over Heathrow (Source: Getty)

Foreign secretary Boris Johnson was among the first to come out fighting after the government announced plans for a new runway at Heathrow.

Johnson's opposition is well known, but how did many of his peers respond?

Cabinet members

It's not just Boris who's angry about Heathrow, his fellow cabinet member and south west London MP Justine Greening is spitting feathers too.

In a statement, Greening said she was “extremely disappointed with the decision”.

“My views against expanding Heathrow, particularly on the impact of noise and air pollution on local residents and the weak economic case, are long-held and well-known,” she said.

Greening and Johnson are the only cabinet members to be granted permission by the prime minister to publicly oppose the decision so far.

Read More: Poll: Londoners would rather expand Gatwick than Heathrow

The Opposition

Labour's official line is pro-airport expansion, with no particular bias towards either of the airports, although you wouldn't know that from shadow chancellor John McDonnell, whose constituency includes Heathrow.

McDonnell said that building a new runway at Heathrow would be devastating for local residents.

“I'll continue to support my constituents in campaigning against this runway so that it never sees the light of day,” he said.

Read More: I quit government over Heathrow expansion: This is why I changed my mind

Conservative backbenchers

Theresa May is facing brickbats from her backbenchers too, over the decision to expand Heathrow, and most notably Richmond Park MP Zac Goldsmith, who has said he intends to resign over the verdict.

Goldsmith is set to make a formal announcement later today, but said in the House of Commons that a new runway was both “wrong” and “doomed” with expansion facing sufficient challenges to make it “a millstone around the government's neck”.

Goldsmith's south-west London constituency neighbour Dr Tania Mathias – whose team have previously told City A.M. she would back “whatever Zac decides to do” – was similarly aggressive, declaring expansion “misguided and not in the nation's interest”.

But there has also been plenty of vocal support for the project among MPs, not least among those glad a decision has finally been taken.

Kwasi Kwarteng, whose Orpington constituents include many workers at Heathrow said his only regret was that the government was not backing additional construction at Gatwick and Stansted.

"We should be having three more runways," he said.

"We have got to face up to the fact that there is a whole world of opportunity in trade and tourism and in order to grow we have to accept that we probably need a bit more capacity."

MPs will be granted a vote on the new runway in winter 2017/18. Foreign affairs committee chair - and Heathrow supporter - Crispin Blunt has previously said he expected the House of Commons to back expansion by "a substantial majority".

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