MPs have voted down an amendment to the government’s Trade Bill which would help protect the NHS from any form of control from outside the UK.
Many now fear the health service could become part of a trade deal with the USA after the amendment was voted down by 340 to 251 late on Monday night.
Gedling resident James Sinclair hoped his local MP Tom Randall would have backed calls for an amendment.
He said: “During the election it was my understanding from the Conservatives that the NHS would not be on the table during trade talks with any country. This clause would had ensured that the NHS would had been safe.
“It appears that my MP for Gedling voted against this clause therefore paving the way for parts of the NHS to be not protected from foreign ownership.
“I do honestly believe that our Gedling MP only votes for his party’s policies and not the interests of his constituents.”
Gedling Eye contacted Mr Randall and asked him to respond following concerns over his vote.
Mr Randall said he has always been clear that ‘the NHS is not for sale, no matter how many times Labour play politics with the it’ and wasn’t on the table in trade deals.
He said “The NHS is not for sale. It wasn’t yesterday, it isn’t today, it won’t be next year and under the Conservatives it never will be.”
“The price the NHS pays for drugs isn’t on the table and the services the NHS provides are not on the table. Monday’s amendment to the Trade Bill was nothing more than a distasteful exercise in parliamentary showboating and a stunt from Labour.
The amendment was not designed to help the NHS.”
“The text from the Trade Bill itself says:’Regulations under subsection (1) may make provision for the purpose of implementing a free trade agreement only if the other signatory (or each other signatory) and the European Union were signatories to a free trade agreement immediately before exit day.’ ”
“So, the Bill only rolls over pre-existing trade agreements that we already have via the European Union – nothing to do with the United States.
“Labour’s game playing was intended to generate misleading headlines and obscure the truth about how protecting the NHS is at the heart of our negotiations.”
Simon Hulse from Calverton was also concerned about the vote.
He contacted us to say: “It seems the NHS is on the table and for sale to Donald Trump. It should be protected. Look how the US healthcare system has struggled with coronavirus. Do we want a system more like theirs? Ours should be safe from harm.”
Mark Spencer, who is MP for Sherwood also voted against an amendment but said it ‘was ridiculous’ that people thought that parts of the NHS would now be up for sale.
He said: “To be clear, the idea that a British Government would ‘sell’ parts of our National Health Service, to America or anyone else, is frankly ridiculous.
“This is tired and typical Labour spin, and whilst I’m disappointed, I have to say I’m not entirely surprised.
Every single leaflet that Labour put out claims the NHS is in some kind of danger, and yet, after 10 years of Conservative Government, here is our NHS, receiving record levels of funding under Boris Johnson and the Conservatives.
Considering we are in the middle of a global pandemic, now more than ever it’s essential that people are given the facts, not political spin, and I think it’s time Labour give up with these scaremonger tactics.
The idea that the NHS is or was ‘up for sale’ is just factually untrue, and blatant political spin from Sir Keir’s Labour”
Labour MP for Nottingham East Nadia Whittome voted to include the amendment.