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Tory MP Chris Kelly rebels for the third time
4:09pm Friday 2nd November 2012 in News
REBEL Dudley South MP Chris Kelly’s latest vote against the Government - this time over the EU budget - marks his third major act of mutiny this Parliament.
The 33-year-old, one of the new intake of 2010, is one of 37 Conservative MPs who have taken part in all three big rebellions in the Commons which have dealt bitter blows to Prime Minister David Cameron.
The first saw Tory backbenchers defying their boss to call for an EU referendum, the second was a vote against plans to reform the House of Lords; and the third - on Wednesday October 31 - saw defiant Conservatives join forces with Labour MPs to back Mark Reckless MP’s call for a real terms cut in spending by Brussels.
Independent-minded Mr Kelly said of his latest decision to side with rebels: “In a time of public spending restraint at home - necessitating pay freezes and even pay reductions - Parliament ought to send a message to Brussels about the size of its budget.”
The vote on the European Union budget was not binding but Mr Cameron now faces pressure to take a hard line in talks at a summit in Brussels in a few weeks time.
Several countries are expected to call for an increase in spending but the Prime Minister has said any rise should be in line with inflation.
As in previous key EU votes - Stourbridge MP Margot James has backed the Government, saying: “I am as in favour of cutting the European budget as anyone else. But we don’t have control over the budget, we have to agree the level with 26 other countries.”
The Prime Minister has, however, said he would veto any significant hike in the budget for 2014 to 2020 if he could not get a deal that was good for Britain.