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No Mr Penning – removing the public sector pay cap is not a political stunt

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Our MP, Mike Penning, has felt the need go online to explain the reasons why he voted against lifting the 1% pay cap for public sector workers, which he did in the House of Commons on Wednesday night. Here are Tory MPs cheering when the result of the vote was announced.

The reason, he said, was that the vote was a "political stunt intended to bring down the government" which would mean “the government would fall and we would be forced into a general election”.

No, Mr Penning this was a political stunt designed to lift the public sector pay cap for workers whose wages have been outstripped by inflation and who, in some cases, are being forced to use food banks to feed their children.

This is a stunt designed to help firefighters and police who put their lives on the line at London Bridge, Manchester Arena and Grenfell be able to afford the rent in places like London where their lives are at risk every day.

This is a stunt designed to shake the magic money tree which Theresa May is using to fund a £1.5bn deal with the Ulster Unionists to keep her in power after losing her Parliamentary majority and her mandate to govern in our name.

Let’s be clear. Losing an amendment in the House of Commons would not bring down the Government. If the Government falls it will be because of the choices it is making on things like pay freezes and the £2m worth of cuts coming to Hemel schools which are deeply unpopular.

Mr Penning never tires of telling us that he used to be a firefighter. I wonder if he could look his former watch in the eye and explain to them that they don’t deserve a pay rise because it’s just a political stunt?

This from an MP who voted through 11% pay rise for MPs last year and once claimed for a dog bowl on Parliamentary expenses.

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