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House of Lords rejects boundary changes that would have created Richmond and Twickenham constituency
Proposed changes to constituency boundaries have been postponed after peers blocked the move.
The House of Lords voted by 300 to 231 to delay the boundary review changes from later this year until 2018.
The move could have seen Vince Cable go head-to-head with Zac Goldsmith, Conservative MP for Richmond Park, and fight for a new Richmond and Twickenham constituency.
The boundary changes, originally planned to be in place for the next General Election in 2015, would also reduce the number of MPs from 650 to 600 and were expected to boost Conservatives’ election prospects.
The Twickenham MP told this newspaper in August last year he was confident the changes would not go ahead because Liberal Democrats were determined to halt the Tories’ plans.
The Business Secretary said his party was standing firm and would take revenge against the Tories for failing to deliver House of Lords reform.
After the result on Monday, January 14, he said: “I am pleased the boundary review has been postponed.
“The review was a major distraction and I will now be able to concentrate on the constituency which elected me.”
Mr Goldsmith said boundary changes were rarely welcomed by constituency MPs because they involved losing connections with local people and causes.
He said: “However, the coalition backed the principle and should in my view ave followed through with the actual proposals.”
David Cameron is expected to press ahead with a Commons vote on the plans despite the defeat.