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Arlene Foster’s Democratic Unionist party is propping up the Tory government – but can do what it likes in non-binding votes [Image: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images].

The DUP is free to vote whichever way it chooses because the minority Conservative government has no intention to do anything about either motion.

The results of Opposition Day debates are not binding on the government. That’s why the Tories abstained on NHS pay, allowing the motion to pass unopposed.

The government will do nothing – apart from demonstrating its disdain for hard-working doctors, nurses and support staff.

At the time of writing, the vote on tuition fees has not taken place – but, again, the DUP is free to do whatever its MPs want because it won’t make a scrap of difference.

The question is, how would the Northern Irish party vote if the Tories had to re-establish their plan for the NHS, and for students?

My guess is they’d tuck their collective tails between their legs and file through the ‘aye’ lobby with the Tories, no matter what they did today.

The Democratic Unionist party is planning to vote with Labour in favour of raising NHS pay and against higher tuition fees during opposition day debates, the Guardian has learned.

The party’s MPs will back Labour on a “fair pay rise” for NHS workers and oppose the government’s increase in tuition fees – the first time the DUP will have broken with the Conservatives since their deal after the election.

A DUP source confirmed that the party’s position was to vote on Wednesday for two opposition day motions tabled by Labour. The votes are believed to be non-binding and therefore fall outside the DUP’s confidence and supply agreement with Theresa May’s party.

Source: DUP plans to vote with Labour on NHS pay and tuition fees | Politics | The Guardian


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