Thursday, 3 December 2015

That list of 72 and other thoughts

Yesterday, on the debate about whether Britain should stage air strikes on Syria or not (to counter the threat of the Islamic State terrorist group, also known as Daesh), MPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of air strikes by 397 to 223.

How did a margin of 174 on that vote emerge with a government majority of only 10, you ask?

The key answer: 72 'opposition' MPs in Britain (66 Labour, 6 Liberal Democrat) ignored voters' pleas not to back air strikes and voted in favour of them, for various reasons. It has been reported that 15 Labour MPs were swayed by just one pro-air strike speech, from Hilary Benn, Labour MP for Leeds Central.

Here are the 72 MPs in question:

Heidi Alexander (Labour, Lewisham East)
Ian Austin (Labour, Dudley North)
Adrian Bailey (Labour, West Bromwich West)
Kevin Barron (Labour, Rother Valley)
Margaret Beckett (Labour, Derby South)
Hilary Benn (Labour, Leeds Central)
Luciana Berger (Labour, Liverpool Wavertree)
Tom Blenkinsop (Labour, Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland)
Ben Bradshaw (Labour, Exeter)
Tom Brake (Liberal Democrat, Carshalton & Wallington)
Chris Bryant (Labour, Rhondda)
Alan Campbell (Labour, Tynemouth)
Alistair Carmichael (Liberal Democrat, Orkney & Shetland)
Jenny Chapman (Labour, Darlington)
Nick Clegg (Liberal Democrat, Sheffield Hallam)
Vernon Coaker (Labour, Gedling)
Ann Coffey (Labour, Stockport)
Yvette Cooper (Labour, Normanton, Pontefract & Castleford)
Neil Coyle (Labour, Bermondsey & Old Southwark)
Mary Creagh (Labour, Wakefield)
Stella Creasy (Labour, Walthamstow)
Simon Danczuk (Labour, Rochdale)
Wayne David (Labour, Llanelli)
Gloria De Piero (Labour, Ashfield)
Stephen Doughty (Labour, Cardiff South & Penarth)

Jim Dowd (Labour, Lewisham West & Penge)
Michael Dugher (Labour, Barnsley East)
Angela Eagle (Labour, Wallasey)
Maria Eagle (Labour, Garston & Halewood)
Louise Ellman (Labour, Liverpool Riverside)
Tim Farron (Liberal Democrat, Westmorland & Lonsdale)
Frank Field (Labour, Birkenhead)
Jim Fitzpatrick (Labour, Poplar & Limehouse)
Colleen Fletcher (Labour, Coventry North East)
Caroline Flint (Labour, Don Valley)
Harriet Harman (Labour, Camberwell & Peckham)
Margaret Hodge (Labour, Barking)
George Howarth (Labour, Knowsley)
Tristram Hunt (Labour, Stoke-on-Trent Central)

Dan Jarvis (Labour, Barnsley Central)
Alan Johnson (Labour, Hull West & Hessle)
Graham Jones (Labour, Hyndburn)
Helen Jones (Labour, Warrington North)
Kevan Jones (Labour, North Durham)
Susan Elan Jones (Labour, Clwyd South)
Liz Kendall (Labour, Leicester West)
Peter Kyle (Labour, Hove)
Chris Leslie (Labour, Nottingham East)
Holly Lynch (Labour, Halifax)
Siobhain McDonagh (Labour, Mitcham & Morden)
Pat McFadden (Labour, Wolverhampton South East)
Conor McGinn (Labour, St Helens North)
Alison McGovern (Labour, Wirral South)
Greg Mulholland (Liberal Democrat, Leeds North West)

Bridget Phillipson (Labour, Houghton & Sunderland South)
Lucy Powell (Labour, Manchester Central)
John Pugh (Liberal Democrat, Southport)
Jamie Reed (Labour, Copeland)
Emma Reynolds (Labour, Wolverhampton North East)
Geoffrey Robinson (Labour, Coventry North West)
Joan Ryan (Labour, Enfield North)
Ruth Smeeth (Labour, Stoke-on-Trent North)
Angela Smith (Labour, Penistone & Stocksbridge)
John Spellar (Labour, Warley)
Gisela Stuart (Labour, Birmingham Edgbaston)
Gareth Thomas (Labour, Harrow West)
Anna Turley (Labour, Redcar)

Chuka Umunna (Labour, Streatham)
Keith Vaz (Labour, Leicester East)
Tom Watson (Labour, West Bromwich East)
Phil Wilson (Labour, Sedgefield)
John Woodcock (Labour, Barrow-in-Furness)

Are you represented by a non-Conservative MP, and was your MP on that list of 72? If so, please tell me.

It is clear that 12 years on from that vote on the Iraq War, so many MPs have still not learned lessons about needlessly going to war and causing the deaths of innocent people, or about what democracy really means. Democracy actually means rule by the people, not rule by an out-of-touch elite who fail to represent people they are supposed to represent.

The split in Labour over Syria may have a short-term impact on the Oldham West & Royton by-election (and also a long-term impact since future Labour splits on important votes are likely), where polls have just closed and where UKIP have been claiming an ability to make a surprise gain (it must be noted here that UKIP's sole MP, Douglas Carswell, voted for air strikes on Syria as well).


  1. Alan for some balance is there a list of Government MP who rebelled against Cameron or did they all vote for. Nick - Independent and Green Party of Northern Ireland member.

    1. Indeed so-although only seven Conservative MPs rebelled in that division. They were David Davis (Haltemprice & Howden), Gordon Henderson (Sittingbourne & Sheppey), Stephen McPartland (Stevenage), Andrew Tyrie (Chichester), John Baron (Basildon & Billericay), Julian Lewis (New Forest East), and Philip Hollobone (Kettering).