The UK Independence Party today slammed other political parties for voting in favour of yet more EU funding, as they approved the EU’s budget for 2015.
UKIP MEP Jonathan Arnott, together with UKIP’s colleagues in the Italian Five-Star Movement, tabled a string of amendments to the EU budget to cut the cost to taxpayers. Every single one of the 46 amendments were rejected: some were voted down, and some didn’t even make it to a vote because the Parliament had already voted to increase the budget items UKIP wanted to cut.
Cuts to MEPs’ salaries, offices and allowances, pensions and European Political Parties were all rejected – as were cuts to the EU’s public opinion analysis, European schools, Special Representatives and payments for co-operation with Greenland.
UKIP MEP Jonathan Arnott, who sits on the Budget Committee, said “The Labour Party in particular have shown their true colours by voting down every attempt to save money from the European Union’s budget. They have shown they just don’t care how much taxpayers’ cash is wasted by the failed European Union project. In total almost a billion pounds would have been saved by the UKIP proposals. In total almost a billion pounds would have been saved by the UKIP proposals.
It wasn’t just our amendments that were voted down either. Other parties’ bids to scrap the House of History (a museum to the European Union) and the EU’s own television service went the same way. I can’t say that I’m surprised – this is just how things are done out here. If Cameron thinks he can renegotiate anything meaningful on the EU with these people, he is naive and out of his depth in European politics.”
The voting then descended into farce, as MEPs voted for an end to EU subsidies on bullfighting, but the vote won’t actually stop the subsidies. On a tight vote, UKIP MEPs swung the vote as the Parliament voted by 323 – 309 to end the subsidies – only to be told that the motion was rejected for lack of a qualified majority. Another vote criticising bullfighting was carried, but also didn’t affect the payments.
Jonathan Arnott also slammed the EU for voting for a 4 billion euro ‘top-up’ to EU funds for 2015, saying “When you run out of money, the answer is to stop spending not to fleece taxpayers for more cash.”