Cameron facing Tory rebellion over EU vote
Published 22/10/2011 | 05:00
PRESSURE is mounting on UK prime minister David Cameron today to give Tory MPs a free vote in Monday's parliamentary debate on an EU referendum, when he faces the likelihood of the biggest rebellion of his 18 months in power.
At least 61 Conservative MPs have now signed a motion calling for a referendum on whether the UK should remain in the EU, leave or renegotiate its membership, and one prominent backbencher predicted the total number of rebels could top 85.
Mark Pritchard, secretary of the Tory backbench 1922 Committee, called on Mr Cameron to allow MPs to back the motion without facing disciplinary action.
Downing Street has made clear that Mr Cameron expects all Conservative MPs to oppose the referendum motion -- triggered by a petition of over 100,000 public signatures -- and two amendments tabled in the hope of finding compromise.