Six of Devon’s Conservative MPs have voted against a Labour amendment to The Queen’s Speech to impose a windfall tax on oil and gas companies. Only Jonny Mercer for Plymouth Moor View and disgraced porn watching MP Neil Parish did not vote down the proposed amendment, which the opposition party claimed could have saved hard-up families struggling to heat their homes £600 a year. Mr Parish, having resigned over watching pornography in Parliament, was unable to vote.
(They can tuck in to their taxpayer subsidised House of Commons Members Dining Room – Owl)
Olivier Vergnault www.devonlive.com
Gary Streeter, for South West Devon, Selaine Saxby, for North Devon, Anthony Mangnall, for Totnes, Kevin Foster, for Torbay, Anne Marie Morris, for Newton Abbot, and Simon Jupp, for East Devon, all voted with the Government. Last night as MPs voted against the move by 310 votes to 248.
Earlier in the day shadow climate change secretary Ed Miliband tore into Chancellor Rishi Sunak over his failure to act earlier during a heated debate in the Commons. He told the House of Commons: “The Chancellor wants us to believe that his measures in response are the best we can do. But they are not. Not by a long shot. The government ‘always try and blame someone else’ when cost of living concerns are raised.”
The shadow minister said he would have “no idea” how he would cope with soaring energy bills if he was on the basic level of Universal Credit. He added: “The truth is, they have run out of excuses, and amidst the chaos and confusion about what their position is, I think a massive U-turn is lumbering slowly over the hill. But I say this to the Chancellor: swallow your pride and get on with it.”
Mr Sunak repeated his claim that “no option is off the table” and that only if oil and gas giants do not invest their profits back into “growth, job and energy security” could the policy could be introduced. The Conservative Party rejected calls to do anything about it immediately.
As reported by the Mirror shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves said: “Last night, every Conservative MP who voted against a windfall tax on oil and gas producer profits has sent a clear message. They will not put working people first, and they have no answer on the cost of living crisis.”
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Conservative MPs have chosen to side with profiteering oil and gas companies over working people. Millions are being walloped by soaring bills and prices having been left badly exposed to this crisis after more than a decade of standstill wages and cuts to social security, overseen by successive Tory governments, all the while the likes of Shell and BP are registering eye-watering profits.
“Enough is enough. The Chancellor must bring forward an emergency Budget to give households grants to help with energy bills – funded by a windfall tax on oil and gas giants – and immediately increase Universal Credit and the minimum wage.”