On Wednesday, MPs voted on an amendment
to the Queen’s Speech tabled by John Baron MP aimed at demonstrating support in Parliament
for a Bill that would write into law the holding
of an EU referendum.
Such a bill, Mr Baron argued, would serve to increase
public trust in David Cameron’s pledge that he will hold
an in-out EU referendum by the end of 2017.
Official figures for Wednesday’s vote on an EU Referendum Bill have now been published in the House of Commons record Hansard (15 May 2013 : Column 749).
The amendment proposed by John Baron MP to the Queen’s Speech was as follows:
“This House respectfully regrets that an EU referendum bill was not included in the Gracious Speech.”
The vote listing shows that, including tellers (MPs who count the votes), 133 MPs voted that an EU referendum bill should have been included in the government’s legislative programme. The breakdown by party is as follows:
4 Democratic Unionists
1 Lib Dem (John Hemming MP)
1 Respect (George Galloway MP)
The amendment was, however, defeated by 280 MPs (including tellers) voting against a bill to provide for an EU referendum. The breakdown by party of the ‘against’ the side was:
48 Lib Dem
5 Scottish Nationalists
2 Plaid Cymru
The lone Conservative recorded as having voted against an early EU referendum bill - Kwasi Kwarteng, MP for Spelthorne – has since insisted to The Times that this was the mistake of a “rookie clerk” – and that his intention was to “deliberately abstain”. Even if so, this is still unlikely to be a popular course of action with his Surrey constituents.
The largest party grouping among the 228 MPs not present for the vote were Conservatives. According to reports ministers and those with government jobs were instructed to abstain, despite David Cameron also describing the decision on the amendment as a ‘free vote’. The number of absent MPs by party were:
8 Lib Dem
4 Democratic Unionist
1 Green (Caroline Lucas)
1 Plaid Cymru
Finally, the 9 MPs who never vote in the Commons are the Speaker, his three deputies and the five Sinn Fein MPs who do not attend Westminster.
In summary: 133 voted ‘for’, 280 voted ‘against’, 228 were absent and 9 don’t vote = 650 MPs.
Standing out in particular from these figures is the behaviour of the Scottish Nationalists. Given the referendum they have called for and secured on whether Scotland should remain in the United Kingdom, they surely cannot credibly oppose a referendum on whether the UK should remain in the European Union. We’d like to ask supporters of an EU referendum in Scotland who have an SNP Member of Parliament to get hold of their MP and ask them to explain the stance they took in this vote and to ask them to support the forthcoming EU Referendum Bill. We’d be really interested to see a copy of any replies received to email@example.com
Over the next few days we’ll be feeding the data on how individual MPs voted on Wednesday into our online database, so that each MP’s page on our website will be updated and everyone can easily check their MP’s record. In the meantime, listed below are the names of those MPs who voted to support an early EU Referendum Bill – and the names of some who have said that they support an EU referendum, but who either didn’t vote, or voted against Wednesday’s amendment.
Looking ahead, the People’s Pledge will be doing all we can to support the Private Member’s Bill for an EU Referendum now being taken forward by James Wharton MP. Keep watching for more on this front very soon.
These MPs voted in support of an early EU Referendum Bill:
116 Conservatives: Adam Afriyie (Windsor), Peter Aldous (Waveney), David Amess (Southend West), Stuart Andrew (Pudsey), Richard Bacon (Norfolk South), Steven Baker (Wycombe), Stephen Barclay (Cambridgeshire North East), John Baron (Basildon & Billericay), Gavin Barwell (Croydon Central), Guto Bebb (Aberconwy), Andrew Bingham (High Peak), Brian Binley (Northampton South), Crispin Blunt (Reigate), Peter Bone (Wellingborough), Graham Brady (Altrincham & Sale West), Andrew Bridgen (Leicestershire North West), Steve Brine (Winchester), Fiona Bruce (Congleton), Aidan Burley (Cannock Chase), Conor Burns (Bournemouth West), David Burrowes (Enfield Southgate), Dan Byles (Warwickshire North), Alun Cairns (Vale of Glamorgan), Bill Cash (Stone), Rehman Chishti (Gillingham & Rainham), Christopher Chope (Christchurch), James Clappison (Hertsmere), Geoffrey Cox (Devon West & Torridge), Tracey Crouch (Chatham & Aylesford), David Davies (Monmouth), Philip Davies (Shipley), David Davis (Haltemprice & Howden), Nick de Bois (Enfield North), Caroline Dinenage (Gosport), Nadine Dorries (Bedfordshire Mid),Richard Drax (Dorset South), James Duddridge (Rochford & Southend East), Graham Evans (Weaver Vale), Lorraine Fullbrook (South Ribble), Roger Gale (Thanet North), James Gray (Wiltshire North), Robert Halfon (Harlow), Simon Hart (Carmarthen West & Pembrokeshire South), Gordon Henderson (Sittingbourne & Sheppey), Philip Hollobone (Kettering), Sir Gerald Howarth (Aldershot), Stewart Jackson (Peterborough), Bernard Jenkin (Harwich & Essex North), Gareth Johnson (Dartford), Marcus Jones (Nuneaton), Daniel Kawczynski (Shrewsbury & Atcham), Chris Kelly (Dudley South), Simon Kirby (Brighton Kemptown), Andrea Leadsom (Northamptonshire South), Jessica Lee (Erewash), Phillip Lee (Bracknell), Edward Leigh (Gainsborough), Charlotte Leslie (Bristol North West), Julian Lewis (New Forest East), Ian Liddell-Grainger (Bridgwater & Somerset West), Jonathan Lord (Woking), Tim Loughton (Worthing East & Shoreham), Karen Lumley (Redditch), Jason McCartney (Colne Valley), Karl McCartney (Lincoln), Stephen McPartland (Stevenage), Anne Main (St Albans), Paul Maynard (Blackpool North & Cleveleys), Mark Menzies (Fylde), Patrick Mercer (Newark), Stephen Metcalfe (Basildon South & Thurrock East), Nigel Mills (Amber Valley), David Morris (Morecambe & Lunesdale), James Morris (Halesowen & Rowley Regis), Caroline Nokes (Romsey & Southampton North), David Nuttall (Bury North), Matthew Offord (Hendon), Eric Ollerenshaw (Lancaster & Fleetwood), Priti Patel (Witham), John Penrose (Weston-Super-Mare), Andrew Percy (Brigg & Goole), Stephen Phillips (Sleaford & North Hykeham), Chris Pincher (Tamworth), Dominic Raab (Esher & Walton), Mark Reckless (Rochester & Strood), John Redwood (Wokingham), Jacob Rees-Mogg (Somerset North East), Laurence Robertson (Tewkesbury), Andrew Rosindell (Romford), David Ruffley (Bury St Edmunds), Andrew Selous (Bedfordshire South West), Alec Shelbrooke (Elmet & Rothwell), Sir Richard Shepherd (Aldridge-Brownhills), Henry Smith (Crawley), Mark Spencer (Sherwood), Andrew Stephenson (Pendle), John Stevenson (Carlisle), Iain Stewart (Milton Keynes South), Gary Streeter (Devon South West), Mel Stride (Devon Central), Julian Sturdy (York Outer), Sir Peter Tapsell (Louth & Horncastle), Justin Tomlinson (Swindon North), David Tredinnick (Bosworth), Andrew Turner (Isle of Wight), Martin Vickers (Cleethorpes), Charles Walker (Broxbourne), Robin Walker (Worcester), James Wharton (Stockton South), Heather Wheeler (Derbyshire South), Chris White (Warwick & Leamington), Craig Whittaker (Calder Valley), John Whittingdale (Maldon), Bill Wiggin (Herefordshire North), Dr Sarah Wollaston (Totnes), Nadhim Zahawi (Stratford-on-Avon).
11 Labour: Rosie Cooper (Lancashire West), Jeremy Corbyn (Islington North), John Cryer (Leyton & Wanstead), Natascha Engel (Derbyshire North East), Frank Field (Birkenhead), Roger Godsiff (Birmingham Hall Green), Kate Hoey (Vauxhall), Kelvin Hopkins (Luton North), Grahame Morris (Easington), Dennis Skinner (Bolsover), Graham Stringer (Blackley & Broughton)
6 other: Lib Dem John Hemming (Birmingham Yardley): Respect George Galloway (Bradford West) and Democratic Unionists Nigel Dodds (Belfast North), Rev William McCrea (Antrim South), David Simpson (Upper Bann), Sammy Wilson (Antrim East).
These MPs have previously said that they support an EU referendum but were absent from Wednesday’s vote. Absence may not be a deliberate abstention. It could be for a number of reasons, such as illness, agreed absence and pairing, or attendance of one of the many Commons committees. In the case of Conservative absentees, some may have taken a political decision that it wasn’t necessary on this occasion to vote against their party’s wishes after David Cameron published a draft EU Referendum Bill just prior to Wednesday’s vote and pledged to give it official support.
Nevertheless, if your MP is listed below please do contact them to ask why they were not present, to encourage their support for an EU referendum and to obtain an undertaking that they will ensure they are present to vote when approval of the EU Referendum Bill comes before parliament. Absent MPs were:
15 Conservative: Henry Bellingham (North West Norfolk), Bob Blackman (Harrow East), Douglas Carswell (Clacton), Mark Field (Cities of London & Westminster), Mike Freer (Finchley & Golders Green), Zac Goldsmith (Richmond Park), Adam Holloway (Gravesham), Jeremy Lefroy (Stafford), Anne Marie Morris (Newton Abbot), Neil Parish (Tiverton & Honiton), Simon Reevell (Dewsbury), Mark Simmonds (Boston & Skegness), Bob Stewart (Beckenham), Mike Weatherley (Hove), Rob Wilson (Reading East).
4 Labour: Ronnie Campbell (Blyth Valley), Austin Mitchell (Great Grimsby), Derek Twigg (Halton), Keith Vaz (Leicester East)
7 other: Lib Dem Mike Hancock (Portsmouth South), Green Caroline Lucas (Brighton, Pavilion), Democratic Unionists Gregory Campbell (East Londonderry), Jeffrey Donaldson (Lagan Valley), Ian Paisley Jr (North Antrim), Jim Shannon (Strangford) and Independent Lady Hermon (North Down).
Finally, these MPs have said that they support an EU referendum but voted against a bill providing for that referendum being brought forward in this session of parliament. Presuming that they have not gone back on their previous support for an EU referendum – expressed, amongst other places, in videos shown on the People’s Pledge website (links below) – perhaps they objected to the timing of the Bill suggested by this amendment? If you are a constituent of one of the MPs below, please contact them to find out why they voted against this amendment and to encourage them to support the forthcoming EU Referendum Bill:
6 Labour: David Crausby (Bolton North East), Jon Cruddas (Dagenham & Rainham), Jim Fitzpatrick (Poplar & Limehouse), Tom Harris (Glasgow South), George Howarth (Knowsley), Gerry Sutcliffe (Bradford South).
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