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Lib Dem rebel admits defeat over health bill



Exclusive A GP peer who led the Liberal Democrat revolt against the NHS reforms in the second chamber has conceded defeat over the health bill, which she claims is a ‘nasty trick’ against the public.

This week the Health and Social Care Bill returns to a committee of the whole House of Lords after the second reading was passed by peers who rejected another former GP peer Lord Rea’s  amendment that would have effectively killed the bill.

Former Lib Dem health front bench spokeswoman Baroness Jenny Tonge, who voted with the Labour side,  told Pulse that she was ‘very depressed’ because the vote had ended any ‘realistic hope of saving the NHS from this act of privatisation.’

Baroness Tonge said the bill was ‘unconstitutional’ and a ‘very nasty trick against the British electorate’ because it was not in either Conservative or Lib Dem manifestos or in the coalition agreement.

‘This was not something they voted for and never dreamt would happen and now it is here,’ she told Pulse.

‘My party should be ashamed of itself. I am very ashamed that they have allowed themselves to be drawn into this. Nick Clegg and the other leaders have sold their souls and betrayed the NHS.’