There were three votes on the controversial Welfare Uprating Bill last night, two of which triggered Lib Dem rebellions.
On the first, deleting Clauses 1-3 of the Bill, Andrew George, Martin Horwood, Julian Huppert, Charles Kennedy and Alan Reid voted against the Government.
In the brief Third Reading debate, LibDem Deputy Leader Simon Hughes stated that the party was ‘not comfortable about this sort of Bill’.
The vote on Third Reading saw the above rebels joined by John Leech, Adrian Sanders, Sarah Teather and Mark Williams.
Abstentions and absentees included Dan Rogerson (co-sponsor of Andrew George’s amendment which was due to arcane Commons protocol not put to the vote), Annette Brooke, Mike Crockart, Tim Farron, Mike Hancock, David Ward, Roger Williams, Jenny Willott and Chris Huhne.
Some who have rebelled on other votes, including Greg Mulholland and Bob Russell, supported the Government this time. Nonetheless I make this the second-biggest Lib Dem rebellion this Parliament.