Peers vote to delay boundary review
The House of Lords has voted to delay the Government's proposed boundary review until after the next election.
Lib Dem peers backed a Labour amendment to the Electoral Registration and Administration Bill pushing the review back until October 2018.
David Cameron is reportedly prepared to use the Parliament Act to overturn the amendment in a Commons vote later this month.
However the Prime Minister's hopes of pushing through the reforms suffered a further setback this afternoon, after it emerged the SNP would join Labour and the Lib Dems in opposing the measures.
A spokesperson for the SNP, which has 6 MPs, told PoliticsHome the party would not be doing a deal on the reforms.
“There have been no discussions and no deal will be done on the boundary review. Given the fall-out and petty score-settling between the Tories and Lib Dems, people will wonder if this whole process has been a waste of time and waste of money," he said.
Green MP Caroline Lucas also said she would vote against the plans, which she accused of being based on "Whitehall quotas".
“I’ve already been contacted by constituents who are appalled by these plans – constituency boundaries should reflect the communities that MPs represent, rather than just points on a map drawn in Whitehall to meet quotas of voters,” she said.
The Times also this morning reported that William McCrea, the DUP MP for South Antrim, had said he would not back the changes, and said the process should be halted quickly to prevent public money being wasted.
The Government has stood by the plans, which would deliver the Tories 20 extra seats, despite a pledge by the Liberal Democrats to block them.
But if the SNP, Mr McRea and Ms Lucas supported Labour and the Lib Dems in opposing the changes, they would outnumber the remaing MPs in Parliament, excluding Sinn Fein who do not take their seats.