United Kingdom

Cameron suffers rebellion


Prime Minister David Cameron suffered what has been described as a humiliating rebellion from within his own party last night.

Rather than giving a free vote, he insisted that the Conservative Party vote down a backbench motion calling for a referendum on membership of the European union. The party three line whip (meaning MPs must vote the way the leadership decide) was defied by 79 of the 305 members of his parliamentary party, just under a quarter of all Tory MPs.

The vote was lost because coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats, and opposition Labour Party MPs largely voted against the motion. The final result was 483 against the motion and 111 in favour.

A ComRes Survey for the television channel ITV news reported that 68% of British voters want a referendum.

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