Monday, March 12, 2007

More Parliamentary Rebellions

The Trident issue is the latest one to cause headaches for the government, although one is bound to ask how much, in the twilight of his premiership, Tony Blair really cares. Wednesday sees the vote in the Commons about the proposal to renew the Trident programme, and so far a low ranking minister (Nigel Griffiths, Deputy Leader of the House of Commons) and a couple of PPS's have resigned over the issue. The government faces around 100 rebels on its own benches, but, as on Education, the Tories are ready to ride to the rescue and vote for the Trident renewal. There must be times when Tony Blair feels a kinship with his famous predecessor, the first Labour Prime Minister Ramsay Macdonald, who eventually survived in office thanks to the Tories. It's unlikely to be a great feeling - Macdonald was expelled from the party, despite his achievement in having been their first ever Prime Minister. What price the future of a mere three-termer?

The BBC story on the Griffiths resignation is here, and worth noting for material on ministerial resignations (the inability to maintain collective responsibility in this case).

UPDATE: Philip Cowley was on Newsnight tonight to comment on the prospective rebellion. It must be serious!

CORRECTION (13/03/07): There is only 1 PPS who has so far declared he is resigning - Jim Devine - not two as stated above!

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