Published: Thu, September 14, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Government suffers Commons defeat over English tuition fee rise

Government suffers Commons defeat over English tuition fee rise

After Labour said the DUP ought to hand back the taxpayers' cash it gets for being an opposition party, the DUP have today proved that they don't always side with the government.

The Prime Minister was accused of "running scared" from the issue as the Government refused to oppose a Labour motion demanding an end to the 1% cap on wages in the health service.

Because the motion was not binding, their vote against it would not have amounted to a breach of their deal.

DUP MP Ian Paisley had signalled earlier in the Commons that his party would support the motion.

I've already alluded to the fact that I'm delighted that the Labour Party has brought forward this debate tonight.

If the house had formally divided on the motion, the Tories would have faced the embarrassment of DUP MPs walking through the voting lobby with their Labour rivals.

'That's the discussions we had in advance of the last election, and to chide us, you only hurt public servants in Northern Ireland who are benefiting from that £1 billion deal that will allow us to allocate this money to relieve these costs'.

Labour will seek to drive a wedge between the Conservatives and the Democratic Unionist Party after it forced a vote in the Commons on rising tuition fees.

With late-night, knife-edge votes expected to become a regular event, Government whips want to reassure their backbenchers that they support will only be expected on crunch issues rather than non-binding motions seen as "stunts". The pay cap is hitting morale and recruitment across the health service.

Angela Rayner, the shadow education secretary, has tabled a debate and vote on the measure due to come into effect this year.

"And is it also not clear that the reason the Government did not divide on this motion is they knew they would lose?"

Like this: