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Conservative MPs are threatening a rebellion against Theresa May over Universal Credit – not because of the harm being done to vulnerable people, but because they’re afraid they might lose their cushy Parliamentary jobs over it.

Here‘s how the story is being reported in The Independent:

The article states: “Tory rebels will defeat the government unless huge cuts for people moving onto universal credit are stopped, Philip Hammond has been warned.

“Up to 30 Conservative backbenchers are ready to act unless the hardest-hit groups – single parents and second earners in families – are given urgent help, one predicted.

“The number is many more than is needed to overturn Theresa May’s fragile majority of just 13, even if she clings onto the support of the Democratic Unionist Party.

“Crucially, regulations still need to be passed to move millions more people onto the controversial new benefits system, creating a clear opening for a Conservative revolt.”

The story that backbenchers are concerned about their constituents who claim Universal Credit – or will in the future – is heartwarming. If only it were true.

Here’s Clare Hepworth to deliver the reality check:

That’s right. These people were happy to put the boot in when they thought there would be no backlash against them.

It’s only now their own easy life is in danger that they’re starting to show concern.

Fake concern.

And that’s no concern at all. It might last until the next general election but if they managed to hoodwink people into electing them again, you can bet they’d be pulling on the jackboots to give the poor a hard kicking the very next day.

Here‘s the sticking-point:

The Independent (again) elaborates:

The article states: “The Conservatives have been hit by a shortage of candidates for the next general election because activists are “demoralised” by Theresa May’s leadership and fear defeat, a party insider has revealed.

“The number of applications is “down on previous years across the board”, the prime minister has been warned – even as the turmoil at Westminster cuts the odds on a snap poll.

“Some branches in target seats have been forced to postpone decisions, despite pressure to get candidates in place early, the executive editor of the ConservativeHome website said.

“The warning comes as the Democratic Unionist Party’s threat to pull its backing for the Tories in a bitter clash over Brexit leaves the government’s future in growing doubt.

“Without the DUP, Ms May lacks a majority and – if unable to pass a budget – will face demands to accept she is unable to govern and must stand down.

“There was also widespread “pessimism about the next election”, with only about one-third of party members expecting an outright Conservative victory.”

Reading between the lines, we may conclude that a general election may happen soon and the Conservatives are in no position to win it, as only around a third of party members believe they can win and the kind of people applying to be candidates in target seats are unlikely to change that outlook.

That’s why backbenchers are suddenly looking for an issue that will make them more popular with the general public – and that’s why they have suddenly developed bleeding hearts over Universal Credit.

But they seem to have forgotten something we all learned recently (during votes on Theresa May’s plans for Brexit):

That’s right. There are no Tory rebels. They always fall back into line when push comes to shove – even when they know Mrs May is betraying them.

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