December 14, 2021 2.52 pm

At least three Lincolnshire MPs to vote against tougher measures to tackle Omicron variant

More than 80 MP predicted to rebel

At least three Lincolnshire MPs are set to rebel on a vote for new COVID measures tonight, the latest reports suggest.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson will ask the House of Commons to vote in favour of the latest measures on Tuesday in a bid to tackle increasing numbers of the Omicron variant – with a vote to take place around 6.30pm.

They include compulsory face masks in indoor settings, a return to the work from home if possible request and a potential for a new COVID vaccine passport to be used to access large gatherings.

According to national media reports more than 80 of Mr Johnson’s own MPs could vote against the proposals.

The Spectator included Lincoln MP Karl McCartney, South Holland MP Sir John Hayes and Gainsborough MP Sir Edward Leigh among the list of names expected to oppose.

Sir Leigh tweeted today: “After always voting with the Government this Parliament, I shall vote against vaccine passports. More and more regulation creates hypocrisy.”

Mr Mcartney has previously voted against restrictions and in a recent tweet said he would not be supporting the “draconian impositions on our hard fought freedoms and effects on the nation’s economy”.

Boston and Skegness MP released a statement on Monday saying he would vote in favour of the measures.

“The measures are extremely limited, temporary and proportionate to the threat that the NHS may face if the worst predictions for the Omicron variant prove true,” he said.

“On the specific and seemingly most ‘controversial’ measure, vaccination passes: it’s my view that, given these are a world away from some kind of passports for pubs, they serve to provide a reasonable level of reassurance for attendees at large events.

“For their impact on society, it seems to me to be a microscopic intrusion for the sake of public safety and confidence. If they encourage more people to get vaccinated, so much the better.”

The measures come as Omicron variant cases begin to soar nationally, with the government yesterday reporting they made up 20% of new cases, and set to take over as the dominant variant from Delta within days.

In Lincolnshire two cases have been officially confirmed by the UK Health Security Agency but predictions of how many cases there actually are vary from between 50 to more than 150 depending on methods used.

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