Britain's contribution to EU budgets has been causing UK PM David Cameron a headache today. He had tried to show the country that he was prepared to take on Europe. He planned to fight to prevent a large increase in the E.U. budget which would have a knock on effect on our contribution to the E.U. Cameron believes that a an inflation-linked rise would be acceptable. Ministers have disagreed.
Today in Parliament Cameron was defeated on a vote regarding an EU budget increase.
In usual bad tempered style Cameron accused Labour leader Ed Miliband of opportunism. You can hardly blame Ed for opting to vote with rebel government M.P.s. Those who opposed Cameron voted to pass an amendment calling for a real-terms cut in spending between 2014 and 2020.
Apparently the vote is not binding. Why waste valuable time and money voting then? Our Ministers spend a brief enough time in Parliament without becoming embroiled in pointless exercises. It does however send a clear message to Mr Cameron, It also echoes the majority opinion in the UK that we pay too high a price for being part of the failing EU. As UK budgets are cut and people are expected to tighten their belts surely EU budgets must be cut?.
The amendment was, passed by 307 votes to 294. Close run but enough to challenge Cameron's authority.
The condems want the EU budget frozen in real terms. Cameron agrees that a reduction would be ideal but seems prepared to settle for a freeze. The rebels want a reduction and nothing less. The difference of opinion made for a heated time in the Commons today. Feathers were ruffled and tempers frayed. There is a lot at stake though. Our EU contributions for the next seven years in fact.
Ironically the Conservative MP who was the voice of the rebels is called Mark Reckless, Reckless by name and reckless by nature springs to mind. Speaking to the BBC Mr Reckless said, "What this is about is our constituents money."Parliament has spoken very clearly that unless there is a deal which is a cut in the budget which gives money back to taxpayers in this country, it will not get through Parliament."
The current EU proposals are that the budget for 2014-2020 would see a 5% increase on the current seven year period.
Rebel Ministers insist that they will not accept anything less than a budget cut in real terms.Cameron has said that he will use his veto once again if he cannot get the right deal for the UK. This would not rule out an increase though, would it?
In general people in the UK are sick and tired of our costly membership in the failing EU. Take Note Dave.
Based in Yorkshire, in the middle of the UK, almost, this blogger offers her own unique perspective on life in GB
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