Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Brown Defeated in Gurkha Vote

MPs voted 267 to 246 in favour of a Lib Dem motion that all Gurkhas be offered an equal right of residence. Brown's defence was that Britain could not afford the £1.4 billion cost of settlement, which seems a little scaremongering given they do have pensions, it's not like they'll sit around watching Trisha all day. The compromise Labour has come up with however, is to speed up the reviewing of applications the deadline being May and bring forward proposals for more reform.

Two significant points to come from this is, firstly David Cameron backed Nick Clegg on the motion. I've said several times on this blog that Lib Dems would make a good opposition party to the Tories. Them teaming up would be a real blow to Labour, I wonder if this was just an one off or if they have bigger plans. Either way it was nice to see Clegg in the spotlight, given the Lib Dems record on standing up for civil liberties, I'm glad they get some recognition.

Secondly the amount of back bench MPs rebelling within Labour is unusual, given they're more a dictatorship than a party. MPs openly rebelling is a very good indicator to the mess Labour is in and quite a blow to Brown's authority. He also has another vote tomorrow on MPs' expenses, which looks just as bad. Particularly with back benches feeling stronger off the back of this. If he loses that one, it's getting into vote of confidence terrain.

Though Brown's biggest mistake was thinking he stood a chance against the fabulous Joanna Lumley, the Avenger was trained by The Royal Ballet no less, hence her powerful high kick or mid section kick in this case.

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