Posts Tagged ‘whip’

Whips notebook: part two

06/01/2012, 11:03:04 AM

by Jon Ashworth

Just before the Christmas recess we won a vote. It was at the end of a debate on the economy and our quick thinking and experienced chief and deputy chief whip forced a division when the government was least expecting it. There was panic on the faces of government whips, with one senior government whip, with the rather splendid title of comptroller of Her Majesty household seeming especially agitated.

It was no wonder that the government whips were so hot under the collar. When the final scores on the doors were read out by the Labour whip (who just so happened to be me) only 79 government MPs voted, compared to 213 from the opposition. Of course winning a vote is nothing to get carried away with. Defeating the government on what was effectively a procedural matter doesn’t really change anything, though it does make the government look like a bit of a shambles and puts a spring in the step of a Labour MP.

Labour Uncut readers don’t need reminding that winning the central argument on the economy is vital to Labour’s future electoral success. In squaring up to George Osborne our shadow chancellor Ed Balls has a formidable opponent. (more…)

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