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MPs reject fresh kill bill motion

MPs reject fresh kill bill motion

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A fresh motion to scrap the Health and Social Care Bill has been rejected in the House of Commons yesterday (26 October) by a margin of 79 votes.

Opening the debate on the government's record on the NHS, Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham claimed the bill is "unraveling before the Health Secretary's eyes" and has left the NHS in a state of "chaos".

Burnham argued the three key coalition pledges for the NHS – no top-down reorganisation, real terms increases during every year in Parliament and no A&E and maternity closures - formed part of a "calculated and self-serving political strategy to de-toxify the Tory brand, not out of genuine concern for the NHS."

"But far from de-toxifying the Tory brand, [David Cameron] has proved once and for all you really cannot trust the Tories with our NHS," he said.

Burnham warned the abandonment of a pledge to stop top down reorganisations in the NHS is the Prime Minister's "biggest, single mistake in office" and if he ploughs on, "he will ultimately pay a heavy price for it".

Andrew George, a Liberal Democrat MP for St Ives backed Labour's motion, calling the bill "the longest and most incoherent NHS suicide note in history".

Burnham cited official figures from the Treasury, published in June 2011, which shows health spending fell from £102,751m in 2009/2010 to £101,985m in 2010/2011.

"This is the first cut in health spending in real terms for 14 years – the last year of a Tory government," said Burnham.

Andrew Lansley called this a "spectacular own goal" as the cut in funding happened as a result of Labour's decision, "not ours".

The motion to scrap the bill was rejected by 307 votes to 228.

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