Steerpike

Covid passport rebels: in their own words

Covid passport rebels: in their own words
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On Tuesday, MPs will vote will be held on the government's new Covid restrictions to tackle the Omicron variant. Despite mounting public and parliamentary opposition, such measures are set to include vaccine passports for large gatherings, compulsory face masks in more places, and people being asked to work from home when they can though, er, they can still go to parties. Mr S has been monitoring the growing list of declared rebels to such plans, with more than 60 Tories now planning to vote against the so-called 'Plan B' measures. Below are some of the reasons why they are planning to do so in their own words:

Dehenna Davison: 'I have long opposed vaccine passports, and so will vote against their introduction next week. To me, the evidence we have been presented with does not justify further restrictions on liberties. “Just in case” simply doesn’t cut it.'

Simon Jupp: 'Vaccine passports are divisive and discriminatory. They do not stop the spread of Covid. Plan B will cost jobs in many sectors, including hospitality. Working from home won’t help our social or economic recovery. I won’t vote for these measures.

Ben Bradley: 'I said I would not vote for vaccine passports, which I believe are ineffective and discriminatory. I also cannot vote for restrictions 'just in case' at a time when hospitalisations and deaths are falling. I don't believe the evidence supports Plan B and I will not vote for it.

Tom Tugendhat: 'I have spoken out against vaccine passports on a number of occasions and I will continue to do so. In their current form I don’t believe they can work effectively.'

Philip Davies: '[The] latest in a long line of arbitrary, unnecessary, socialist measures supported by the socialists on the other side of the House as well.'

Richard Drax:  'This country is just getting back on its feet, and today hope and freedom—our freedoms—are being taken away again, on the basis of what a variant might, not does, do. These variants will continue to hit us for years to come, and this country cannot go on reacting to them in the way in which we are doing,''

Lee Anderson: 'The evidence is not there to start down the lockdown road again. ‘Just in case’ isn’t good enough to destroy more jobs.'

Jill Mortimer: 'Vaccine passports for domestic use are inequitable and, more importantly, ineffective. There is no evidence that vaccine passports have stopped or significantly slowed the spread of Covid-19 in other parts of the world.'

Christian Wakeford: 'The new restrictions are conflicting and damaging where you are to work from home but go to parties. I cannot support Plan B.'

Johnny Mercer: 'We don’t do ‘vaccine passports’ in the UK. And we at least try to live by the brutally lonely, local business-crushing rules we’ve set for everyone else.'

Desmond Swayne: 'The Adam Smith Institute estimates the economic cost of the measures as £800m per week. We have delivered an intolerable situation of tailoring social and economic activity to accommodate hospital admissions.'

Siobhan Baillie: 'Additional restrictions damage confidence and will cause cancellations for businesses at a crucial time of year. Life events like weddings always suffer too.'

Andrew Rosindell: 'The evidence isn’t there that this new variant is going to be catastrophic. I believe we've got to move on, we've got to get life back to normal again. I don't think that the risks are so great that we have to keep changing the way we live our lives. As we do in Britain we have to keep calm and carry on.'

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to steerpike@spectator.co.uk or message @MrSteerpike

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