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Christchurch MP Sir Christopher Chope rebels against government £12bn National Insurance hike

CHRISTCHURCH MP Sir Chris Chope joined four other Conservative backbenchers rebelling against the government’s £12bn National Insurance hike.

The controversial measure was passed by 319 to 248, however, with New Forest MPs Sir Desmond Swayne and Julian Lewis backing the legislation. Another 37 Tory MPs did not vote on the proposals.

Speaking to Channel 4 News, Sir Chris said he opposed the Prime Minister’s plan because the Conservatives appeared to have “abandoned” being “a party of low taxes”.

Christopher Chope, MP for Christchurch (51055130)
Christopher Chope, MP for Christchurch (51055130)

He warned the party could be “finished” if it began raising taxes, and he acknowledged many of its members were questioning what it stood for.

“We are certainly having an identity crisis,” he said.

The vote concerned the government’s plan to reform social care and fund that with a 1.25% increase in national insurance contributions from workers and employers.Prime Minister Boris Johnson had argued the plan would deal with “catastrophic costs” faced by those who need care. But the plan caused discontent among his own party as it breaks a Conservative manifesto pledge.

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