James Forsyth

118 rebels

118 rebels
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Today was a day with two significant developments. First, the publication of the detailed coalition agreement. Second, the fact that 118 Conservative MPs have rebelled against David Cameron before his first Queen's speech.

The coalition agreement is a document that, I suspect, most Conservatives can get behind. It is not perfect but then no coalition agreement was ever going to be. All of which makes me feel that the 118 is the more significant development of the day.

When you consider how many members of the parliamentary party are either on the government payroll or newbies you realise how substantial, in terms of numbers, this rebellion was. The leadership can't dismiss 118 MPs as a swivel-eyed fringe. There is a serious job to be done to rebuild trust.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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