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Updated: Wycombe MP Steve Baker joins rebels to defeat Government on Europe
WYCOMBE MP Steve Baker was among the Tory rebels who inflicted an embarrassing defeat on the Government last night over Europe.
The Parliamentarian was one of 53 Conservatives who defied their party and joined Labour in voting for a real terms cut in the EU budget.
The Coalition want at the worst a freeze on the budget, proposed to rise by five per cent by the European Commission.
But the Government believes it will be impossible to negotiate a reduction. Euro sceptic Mr Baker has previously rebelled over House of Commons votes on the EU.
Mr Baker told the Free Press this afternoon: “Obviously I didn't enjoy being in the lobby with Labour but I wanted to make plain my view that the EU should be getting less money, not more.
“It was a Conservative amendment and the labour party opportunistically got in and decided to pile into it.
“The knowledge of the way the national papers handle it and the way the Labour party exploit the situation does make it difficult to make that decision to vote.
“In the end what was right with vote we were able to say what we want is less British taxpayers money spent on notoriously wasteful EU projects.
“After all that politics has been through and all the discredit that has been on the House of Commons sometimes you have to do what you think is right.
“I think it's meaningful that taxpayers in Wycombe should pay less towards the EU.”
He blasted the EU for asking for more cash in times of austerity, saying it was out of touch.
“The EU is blissfully free of the concerns of ordinary people,” he said.
“It's a scandalous waste of money.”
Although he wants a cut in the cash Britain gives the EU, he said:“If the Prime Minister secures a real term freeze it will be better than an increase.”
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