How did my MP vote on the smoking bill?

MPs voted 383 to 67, to give the Tobacco and Vapes Bill a second reading

Jabed Ahmed
Wednesday 17 April 2024 10:58 BST
Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty issues message to anyone opposed to smoking ban

Britain is set to ban the next generation from ever being able to smoke after Rishi Sunak proposal cleared its first House of Commons hurdle.

The legislation would make it illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone born after January 1 2009, with the aim of creating a “smoke-free” generation.

MPs voted 383 to 67, majority 316, to give the Tobacco and Vapes Bill a second reading.

The prime minister relied on Labour votes to see off opponents on his own benches, led by the former PM Liz Truss.

Conservative MPs were given a free vote on the Bill, meaning those who voted against the Government’s position will not face punishment.

This allowed serving ministers, including Business Secretary and future Tory leadership hopeful Kemi Badenoch, to publicly reveal they would vote to reject the Bill. She said it undermines the principle of equality under the law by treating adults differently even if they were born just a day apart.

MPs tipped as future Tory leadership candidates, including former immigration minister Robert Jenrick and former home secretary Suella Braverman, also voted against the ban, alongside several serving ministers, while leader of the House of Commons Penny Mordaunt abstained.

Use the searchable table below to see how you local MP voted on the historic bill.

In the end, 57 Tory MPs defied Mr Sunak’s call and voted against the ban, while more than 100 did not vote.

Tory MPs voting against the bill were joined by 7 DUP MPs, Reform Party MP Lee Anderson, and Workers Party of Britain MP George Galloway.

Some 178 Conservatives supported the bill, according to the division list, alongside 160 Labour MPs, 31 SNP MPs, 5 Liberal Democrats, 3 Plaid Cymru MPs, 2 independents, and the Alliance Party’s Stephen Farry.

Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting confirmed Labour’s “wholehearted” support to the Bill, and added his party is “only too happy to defend the Health Secretary against the siren voices of big tobacco” gathered on the Tory benches.

Health Secretary Victoria Atkins said she understood colleagues’ concerns about freedom of choice, and conceded Conservatives were “not in the habit of banning things”, but warned the Commons there was “no liberty in addiction”.

“Nicotine robs people of their freedom to choose. The vast majority of smokers start when they are young, and three-quarters say that if they could turn back the clock they would not have started,” she added.

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