How did your MP vote in Foreign Aid cut bill?

Foreign aid cut 'does not diminish the UK' says MP

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The Government has won a vote on its proposal to cut the minimum spend on overseas foreign aid to 0.5 percent of economic output. The cut was first announced in November last year as a measure to help pay for the astronomical costs generated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The victory for the Government comes after they persuaded enough party members to back the plan, despite early warning signs that a high-profile MP rebellion could bring on an embarrassing defeat for the Prime Minister. 

Many potential rebels were won over by a compromise from the Government, stating aid will be restored to its 0.7 percent level once Britain no longer needs to borrow to fund day-to-day costs. 

Opponents to the bill included Boris Johnson’s predecessor, former Prime Minister Theresa May. 

Those in opposition to the bill expressed scepticism for the conditions to restore the budget to its pre-pandemic level. 

They argues that the relatively small budget saving was far outweighed by the negative impact it would have on aid recipients, and on the UK’s global reputation and standing. 

The Government’s conditions for restoring aid to 0.7 percent will not likely be met before 2024, according to analysis by the House of Commons Library which provides independent research to lawmakers in Westminster. 

The research from the Library was based on Budget forecasts produced in March. 

Chancellor Rishi Sunak told the House: “While not every member felt able to vote for the Government’s compromise, the substantive matter of whether we remain committed to the 0.7 percent target – not just now but for decades to come – is clearly a point of signifiant unity in this House.” 

How long the UK’s economic recovery will take post-pandemic remains to be seen at this point, especially as the pandemic continues on. 

Mr Sunak added: “Today’s vote have made that commitment more secure for the long term whilst helping the Government to fix the problems with our public finances and continue to deliver for our constituents today. 

“I want to commit to the House that both I and the Prime Minister will continue to work with all MPs on how we can continue to be a global leader helping the world’s poorest.”

Mr Sunak said he and Cabinet Ministers would also focus on “how to improve our aid spending” and how to “target it most effectively” in an effort to “ensure that it is getting to those who need it most”. 

The Chancellor concluded: “Having now provided the House with an effective vote on this matter, the Government will now move forward with its planned approach.”

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