Bernard Jenkin has accused Downing Street of a stitch up over their Trade Union bill u-turn. Did ministers deliberately abandon the manifesto commitment to look at the way unions donate to political parties in order to secure funding from unions for the Remain cause?
“Trade Union leaders have been complaining they are unable to campaign effectively for a remain vote in the EU referendum while the Government’s trade union bill has been threatening Trade unions and their funding. The trade union bill would have implemented a Conservative manifesto commitment, and I quote, legislate to ensure trade unions use a transparent opt in process for trade union subscriptions….Yesterday the Minister’s concession was wholly unexpected and my Right Honourable friend for Grantham and Stanford announced his decision to abandon the opposition in this change to the bill…It has been confirmed to me, from two independent sources that Number Ten instructed these concessions to be made after discussions with trade union representatives…This being true would amount to the sale of government policy for cash and political favours…Mr Speaker this stinks. This reeks of the same of Cash for Questions. This shows this government really is at the rotten heart of the European Union.”
That is an explosive claim…
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