Trident and the Democratic Deficit

Trident and the Democratic Deficit

Last nights debate and vote on the future of Trident was a disaster for democracy, particularly in Yorkshire, where not a single MP from major cities such as Leeds or Sheffield bothered to vote either way. Repeated polls have shown that the majority of the UK electorate are opposed to the renewal of Trident especially in the current economic conditions, but how is that majority represented by UK political parties? Trident replacement will represent the largest single public spending decision of the next Parliament, what does it mean for democracy that half of our local MPs didn’t even turn up to hear the debate?

It is interesting to note that as it currently stands, at the upcoming election leaders debate will only host supporters of Trident renewal. We need to ensure that parliamentary candidates from all parties know the strength of our opposition to more public spending on weapons on mass destruction. So please do write to your candidates.

Voters who supported the Liberal Democrats at the last election due to their campaigning on Trident will no doubt have been dismayed to see that when the issue was finally discussed in Parliament, only 10% of the party’s MPs nationally turned out to vote last night. Not a single LibDem MP from Yorkshire voted.

Below is a breakdown of how Yorkshire MPs voted on the motion to Scrap Trident.

Barnsley Central Dan Jarvis (No show)
Barnsley East Michael Dugher (No)
Batley & Spen Mike Wood (No show)
Beverley & Holderness Graham Stuart (no)
Bradford East David Ward (No Show)
Bradford South Gerry Sutcliffe (no)
Bradford West George Galloway (aye)
Brigg & Goole Andrew Percy (no)
Calder Valley Craig Whittaker (no)
Cleethorpes Martin Vickers (no)
Colne Valley Jason McCartney (no)
Dewsbury Simon Reevell (no)
Don Valley Caroline Flint (no)
Doncaster Central Rosie Winterton (no)
Doncaster North Ed Miliband (No Show)
Elmet & Rothwell Alec Shelbrooke (No Show)
Great Grimsby Austin Mitchell (No Show)
Halifax Linda Riordan (No Show)
Haltemprice & Howden David Davis (No Show)
Harrogate & Knaresborough Andrew Jones (no)
Hemsworth Jon Trickett (No Show)
Huddersfield Barry Sheerman (no)
Hull East Karl Turner (no)
Hull North Diana Johnson (no)
Hull West & Hessle Alan Johnson (No Show)
Keighley Kris Hopkins (no)
Leeds Central Hilary Benn (No Show)
Leeds East George Mudie (No Show)
Leeds North East Fabian Hamilton (No Show)
Leeds North West Greg Mulholland (No Show)
Leeds West Rachel Reeves (No Show)
Morley & Outwood Ed Balls (No Show)
Normanton, Pontefract & Castleford Yvette Cooper (no)
Penistone & Stocksbridge Angela Smith (no)
Pudsey Stuart Andrew (no)
Richmond (YORKS) William Hague (no)
Rother Valley Kevin Barron (no)
Rotherham Sarah Champion (No show)
Scarborough & Whitby Robert Goodwill (no)
Scunthorpe Nicholas Dakin (no)
Selby & Ainsty Nigel Adams (No Show)
Sheffield Brightside & Hillsborough Clive Betts (No Show)
Sheffield Central Paul Blomfield (No Show)
Sheffield Hallam Nicholas Clegg (No Show)
Sheffield Heeley Meg Munn (No Show)
Sheffield South East Clive Betts (No Show)
Shipley Philip Davies (no)
Skipton & Ripon Julian Smith (no)
Thirsk & Malton Anne McIntosh (no)
Wakefield Mary Creagh (no)
Wentworth & Dearne John Healey (no)
York Central Hugh Bayley (no)
York Outer Julian Sturdy (no)
YORKSHIRE EAST Greg Knight (no)

For more see the BBC coverage of the vote.