Raab claims ‘late-ish’ debate explains why dozens of Tories failed to back Johnson in vote on standards reform – UK politics live | Politics

Good morning. Last night, as expected, MPs voted down the Labour motion setting a timetable for reform of the Commons standards rules and instead voted for the government amendment, which is weaker in the sense that it is non-binding. Only four Conservative MPs voted for the Labour version (Peter Bone, Philip Hollobone, Nigel Mills and Dan Poulter). But another 74 of them did not vote at all. We don’t know how many of them were authorised not to vote. But only 24 Labour MPs did not vote, suggesting that most of the Tories were not paired and that most of them were deliberately abstaining.

It is not the first time a large chunk of the Conservative parliamentary party has refused to back the government in a sleaze vote. In the original vote on the Owen Paterson report, 97 Tories did not vote, and another 13 voted with the opposition.

Dominic Raab, the deputy prime minister and justice secretary, was on microphone duty for the government this morning. Asked to explain why so many Conservative MPs refused to back the government, Raab claimed it was a “late-ish vote”. He told Sky News:

It was a late-ish vote, I think around seven o’clock, a bit later than that. But I can’t account for every member of parliament on either side.

In fact, 7pm is normally when votes are held on a Wednesday.

I will post more from Raab’s interviews soon. And then later today we’ve got two quite different issues coming up. The government will face accusations of betrayal when it publishes its scaled-back plans for Northern Powerhouse Rail. My colleague Gwyn Topham has the latest here.

And the Treasury committee will be taking evidence on claims that the government’s plans for a social care cap are unfair on poorer families. My colleague Robert Booth has the story here.

Here is the agenda for the day.

10am: Sir Andrew Dilnot, the economist who 10 years ago drew up the original plans for a cap on who much people should have to pay for social care costs, gives evidence to the Commons Treasury committee about the government’s latest version of this plan.

Around 11.30am: Grant Shapps, the transport secretary, makes a statement to MPs about the integrated rail plan.

11.30am: Downing Street holds its lobby briefing.

12pm: Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister, takes questions in the Scottish parliament.

Also, Boris Johnson is doing rail-related visits today, and will be speaking to the media.

I try to monitor the comments below the line (BTL) but it is impossible to read them all. If you have a direct question, do include “Andrew” in it somewhere and I’m more likely to find it. I do try to answer questions, and if they are of general interest, I will post the question and reply above the line (ATL), although I can’t promise to do this for everyone.

If you want to attract my attention quickly, it is probably better to use Twitter. I’m on @AndrewSparrow.

Alternatively, you can email me at andrew.sparrow@theguardian.com

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