19 October 2016

Not getting off the pot

A Tory Prime Minister faced with a deeply divided Tory party has little option but to kick the can down the road.  The Guardian reports:
Theresa May has retreated from holding a parliamentary vote on airport expansion this autumn after the government was warned that Tory MPs could resign their seats if ministers backed a third runway at Heathrow. Two Conservative sources said Downing Street had been warned by whips that May could face resignations and byelections in seats that could be lost to the Liberal Democrats in south-west London.
The prime minister appeared to prepare the way for a decision in favour of expansion at Heathrow on Tuesday, as she revealed cabinet responsibility would be suspended for longstanding opponents of airport expansion in west London. This would allow Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary, and Justine Greening, the education secretary, to carry on voicing dissent on behalf of their constituents.
However, May also signalled there may not be a major vote in parliament on the issue until winter 2017/18, despite the belief of senior government and opposition figures that a vote would take place this autumn.
But it merely postpones the problem; it does not resolve it.  And, meanwhile, the adverse consequences for business and the economy continue to mount ...


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