I brought you news on Monday about the Charles Walker proposal to slash the number of ministers in line with MPs. It turns out that his amendment did get called and there was a vote on Monday night – which he lost by only 293 votes to 252.
No fewer than 22 Tory MPs defied the whips and backed Walker, although this is fewer than the Tory backbencher had anticipated. “You wouldn’t believe how many of them told me they agreed and would give me their vote – and then changed their minds,” he tells me. “It’s taught me rather a lot.”
Looking through the order papers there are some interesting names among the rebels: Andrew Tyrie, Bernard Jenkin, Graham Brady (chair of the 22 Committee) and Mark Field amongst them. Read more