UKIP Uncovered
What motivates the leaders of the United Kingdom Independence Party?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007 

Rebate Sold Out

For Regular Blogging on our disappearing democracy visit:


Meantime also note this Press Release:


Media release: no embargo


More than 125 MPs have been branded 'hypocrites' over a
looming vote in Parliament on Britain's EU rebate, including
several cabinet ministers and many MPs in Labour's most
marginal seats.

As part of the deal done in December 2005, Tony Blair agreed
to surrender £7bn of Britain's refund from the EU budget,
increasing our annual contribution to the EU budget to

On Monday, MPs will vote to approve that deal when the
European Communities (Finance) Bill receives its second
reading in Parliament.

The vote comes as the EU Court of Auditors last week
refused to approve the "majority" of the EU's spending for
the 13th year running.

The government is also under increasing fire for a range
of public service failures, such as high rates of superbug
infections in hospitals, post office closures, local council
service cuts and ill-equipped armed forces.

A survey of MPs' voting intentions has revealed that at
least 129 of the 360 MPs who intend to approve the
unjustifiably large increase in funds paid to the
audit-failing EU are facing cuts to local services in their
own constituencies.

For example, Home Secretary Jacqui Smith's Redditch
constituency is set to be hit by cuts to local public
services or big increases in council tax, as the county
council tries to shave £25 million off its budget in the
wake of a poor funding settlement from the government.

In Bolton, where Transport secretary Ruth Kelly has her
constituency, the town council is looking to cut £5.2m (a
mere few hours worth of the extra money the EU will enjoy)
from its budget to limit council tax rises, likely causing
job losses and service cuts. This is the second round of
cuts to the council's budget to be considered this year.

Environment secretary Hilary Benn's constituency of Leeds
Central remains under serious repeat threat of flooding as
the Environment Agency has blocked a plan for new flood
defences citing "financial pressures".

Communities secretary Hazel Blears has already been branded
a 'hypocrite' in her Salford constituency after joining
protests against changes to hospital and maternity services
and then welcoming the cuts.

The same cuts, experienced across Manchester, also affected
the Stretford & Urmston constituency of Schools minister
Beverley Hughes.

Similarly Health minister Ivan Lewis has seen cuts to
maternity services in his own constituency of Bury South.

MPs in some of Labour's most marginal seats are also risking
a public backlash that could lose them their seats, by
intending to approve the multi-billion pound raise for the
audit-failing EU while local services face cuts.

For example;

- Clive Efford MP for Eltham has criticised the axing of
emergency facilities at local hospitals, but intends to send
money to the EU that could instead have been used to keep
those local services operating;

- Martin Linton MP for Battersea faces local NHS cuts and
reduced police numbers;

- Swindon North and South MPs Anne Snelgrove and Michael
Wills plan to gift billions more to the EU while their local
hospital makes £600,000 cuts to its cleaning budget;

- Joan Ryan MP for Enfield North seems to think the extra
payments to the EU can be afforded while her local hospital
is failing to meet targets for tackling superbug infections.

- Watford MP Claire Ward postures in support of attempts to
secure a new hospital in the town and a local NHS Trust that
is described as financially "weak", while quietly planning
to vote away billions of pounds to the EU that could solve
these local difficulties affecting her constituents;

- Basildon MP Angela Smith (PPS to Gordon Brown) is another
whose local council is facing a cash crisis and considering
service cuts.

Seven Liberal Democrat and two Conservative MPs have also
come under fire for hypocrisy.

Ian Taylor MP for Esher & Walton has protested about the
downgrading of nearby Epsom hospital, but quietly intends to
approve the unjustified government handout of billions more
pounds to the EU that could instead be used to prevent such

And John Gummer's Suffolk Coastal constituency is threatened
by county-wide multi-million-pound cuts to road maintenance,
bus services, elderly care services and extra-curricular
activities in schools as Suffolk County Council tries to
plug a funding black hole.

All these local cuts are being caused by funding shortfalls
that are tiny fractions of the billions these MPs are
planning to approve gifting to the EU.

The research, conducted by the Democracy Movement - a
leading eurosceptic pressure group - lists 360 MPs in total
who have either said they will approve the deal or who have
avoided several chances - including enquiries from
constituents, direct communication and votes in Parliament -
to signal that they oppose the Bill.

The results have been arranged into a 'Hall of Hypocrisy',
ranking the MPs by their majority and level of threats to
local public services.

Top of the ranking is Laura Moffat, MP for Crawley, who
holds her seat by a tiny margin of 37 votes, has faced a
succession of problems with local health services, yet still
intends to vote to approve handing billions of pounds extra
to the audit-failing EU.

The ranking shows how vulnerable many MPs are to being seen
wasting huge amounts of public money while local services
are left wanting.

DM director Stuart Coster said:

"No benefit whatsoever can be claimed for increasing
payments to the EU while auditors cannot explain how the
"majority" of the EU's current budget is being spent.

"MPs can hardly claim to be 'standing up' for local public
services while planning to approve the waste of billions of
pounds extra on the EU, which remains unable to obtain
auditors approval for the majority of its spending".

"Some MPs seem to living in a fantasy land where splashing
extra billions on funding the EU without justification will
not impact on the level of funds remaining for essential

"MPs who vote billions of pounds away to be spent
unaccountably must realise that they will be expected to
take personal responsibility for the ultimately very local

"Come the next election, MPs who vote to approve the EC
(Finance) Bill will be listed in our Hall of Hypocrisy and
held personally responsible for public service shortfalls,
particularly those in their own constituencies, that could
have been avoided if they had not voted to waste more
billions on the EU."



DM's Hall of Hypocrisy (follow links by MPs' names for
stories about cuts in specific constituencies)

European Communities (Finance) Bill 2007-08:

EU Council Decision of 7th June 2007 on the new EU Own
Resources Decision, to which the Bill refers:

EC (Finance) Bill parliamentary schedule

£43.4 billion of European taxpayers' spending open to fraud
(Open Europe briefing)

72 Hammersmith Road, London W14 8TH
T: 020 7603 7796 F: 020 7602 9699

posted by Martin |4:56 PM
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