Boundary vote delays two MPs plan

By a County Press reporter

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

 

PARLIAMENTRY boundary changes that would have led to the Isle of Wight having two MPs after the next election were rejected in the House of Commons yesterday (Tuesday).

The plans for widespread boundary changes to limit constituency sizes ahead of the next general election in 2015 were defeated, after the Liberal Democrats withdrew their support.

MPs voted in favour of supporting a House of Lords amendment to the bill, which means the revised boundaries will not come into effect until at least 2018.

Andrew Turner MP said: "This is not unexpected after the volte-face by the Lib Dems, but it means that plans to reduce the number of MPs will not now be in place for the next election.

"The move would have saved around £13.5m every year, but Nick Clegg MP, who originally enthusiastically supported the plans, decided to order his Lib Dem MPs to vote against them because he lost the vote on changing the House of Lords.

"That took very creative interpretation of the coalition agreement on his part – but it is in the nature of coalitions that there are differences of opinion and policy.

"However, locally our cross-party campaign against the Island having a cross-Solent seat is still a victory.

"When the changes do come in, and it is expected that they will be brought in before the election expected in 2020, the Island will have two MPs.

"We will go from being the largest constituency in the UK to being split into two of the smallest. We all worked together against the madness of a cross-Solent seat and were very well supported by the Island’s independent media. It was a great campaign – the results will just come a little later."

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