MPs last night chose to vote against Labour’s motion to extend free school meals over school holidays until Easter 2021.
The bid was defeated by 322 votes to 261 – a majority of 61.
England and Manchester United footballer, Marcus Rushford has been campaigning to guarantee meals for the UK’s poorest children as the coronavirus pandemic continues to hit.
The striker, who was successful in his campaign back in the summer, said children would have gone to bed last night “not only hungry but feeling like they do not matter”.
Conservative MPs Tom Randall (Gedling) and Mark Spencer (Sherwood) voted against the motion.
Labour’s Nadia Whittome voted for the motion.
After the vote, Ms Whittome tweeted: “I don’t know how the 322 Tory MPs are sleeping tonight. Because I can’t, knowing that 1.4 million children will go hungry this Christmas.”
Gedling MP Tom Randall responded to our request for a comment about last night’s vote.
He said: ” This was an opposition day debate, which means that the opposition pick a motion to debate. The vote at the end, if there is one, is completely non-binding and does not affect Government policy whatever the result.
“This Conservative Government has provided £9.3 billion extra to help those most in need during the pandemic.
“We have also increased Universal Credit, which is the best way to support families outside of term time, by £1,000 and 99.9 per cent of state schools are now open, providing normal free school meals.
“I spoke in last night’s debate. Shortly before I rose to speak the Deputy Speaker imposed a time limit on speeches so unfortunately I had to shorten my remarks.”
You can see Mr Randall’s speech on video here: https://youtu.be/gt5K6PK64cU