On Monday in the House of Commons there was a debate and a vote for the Confidence in Her Majesty’s Government. There was no prospect of the Government being closed down because there are 75 more MPs in the Conservative Party than across the whole of the rest of Parliament when it comes to voting. Indeed this is a clear requirement that many of us have for the next General Election to dramatically reduce the number of Conservative MPs and significantly increase the number of MPs in the rest of the Parliament.
The current situation is that although there are 650 MPs the total voting MPs is 639 with 11 Non-voting MPs: Sinn Féin (7)- Speaker (1)- Conservative Deputy Speakers (2)- Labour Deputy Speakers (1). Of the 639 voting MPs the Conservative Party has 357 and the rest of the voting MPs is 282 so it would require all of the others to vote against the Government and 75 of the Conservative MPs to not vote for the Government to be blocked. The actual result on Monday is that:
The people who voted to endorsed the Government included 342 Conservative MPs – that means that 15 Conservative MPs did not vote. One of these was Nusrat Ghani who is the Wealden MP here in Sussex. All of the other 12 Sussex Conservative MPs voted for the Government. Along with the 342 Conservative MPs 1 of the 10 Independent MPs and 6 of the 8 DUPs voted in favour of the Government.
The people who voted against the Government were a total of 238 MPs which included 182 Labour MPs which means that 18 of the party did not vote but both of the Sussex Labour MPs did vote. There were 37 SNP MPs which means that 7 did not vote. There were 12 Liberal Democrats so 2 that did not vote. Only 2 of the Independent MPs voted against the Government and so along with the 1 who voted in favour of it 7 other MPs did not vote. All of the Plaid Cymru, Alliance, Green Party members did vote against the Government so that includes our Sussex Green Party MP.
During the debate, the first and most dominant person to speak was Boris Johnson. However the second person who broke into his many words was Michael Fabricant and then after Michael was Jeremy Corbyn who stated the following
I am grateful to the Prime Minister for taking a break from his fantasy tour of this country. Could he take one moment to explain why 14 million people in this country are living in poverty, why there are more food banks than there are branches of McDonald’s, why there is a mental health crisis, why big pharma has made so much out of owning the patents of the vaccines, and why his Government are presiding over the enriching of the richest, the impoverishment of the poorest, and the greatest job insecurity in industry after industry? He has created poverty, inequality and insecurity. That is his legacy.
Another Labour MP spoke up a few minutes later and then Keir Starmer was able to speak. The second half of his first part of his speech was as follows. He did then get interrupted but he carried on. However this section is very useful.
But besides the déjà vu, things are different this time. David Cameron left office because he lost a referendum. Mrs May left office because her party could not agree on how to leave the EU. There were serious policy and political disagreements, and the Labour party had our own profound disagreements with both former Prime Ministers on how to grow the economy and how to run our public services, but no one seriously disputed that they were fit for office or that they could be trusted to carry out their own—[Interruption.] I suggest that some of those on the Conservative Benches reread their resignation letters. No one seriously disputed that those former Prime Ministers were fit for office, that they could be trusted to carry out their responsibilities, that the information they gave their Ministers was true to the best of their knowledge or that the policies they proposed were the ones that they believed were best for the country. So no one objected to them staying on while a successor was found.
Three of the Sussex MPs did debate, I will write about their comments on another day. They were Peter Bottomley, Sally-Ann Hart and Caroline Lucas.