It seems there are some Conservatives with a modicum of sense in this matter.
What a shame none of them appear to be in the current Tory cabinet.
The Government is under pressure from senior Conservatives to water down a controversial plan that could deprive Labour of £8m a year of funding from the trade unions.
A growing number of Tory MPs and peers believe that forcing union members to “opt in” to paying the political levy is partisan and divisive and will undermine David Cameron’s attempt to portray the Conservatives as a One Nation “party of working people.”
A cross-party rebellion against the Trade Union Bill in the House of Lords could force a government U-turn. A committee of peers, which took evidence on iton 4 February, may conclude that ministers have not published a proper impact assessment and ask them to think again.
In a separate attack on Labour’s funding, George Osborne announced in November a 19 per cent cut in the state funding for opposition parties. Labour will lose about £1m a year.
Several Tories say the move on union donations should go ahead only as part of a wider review of how all parties are funded, which would shine a spotlight on the Conservatives’ dependence on rich donors, including City financiers.
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