Top Tory admits Govt 'broken'

David Cameron and Nick Clegg insisted the Coalition is "united" until 2015 as they mark the halfway point in their Government. But Tory peer Lord Strathclyde, who quit as Lords leader today, admitted he had complained the partnership was "broken."

View all 26 updates ›

Former children's minister slams benefit cap

A former Liberal Democrat minister has warned she intends to defy the party leadership and vote against coalition plans to cap benefits.

Sarah Teather, who lost her job as children and families minister in the September reshuffle, said she would oppose proposals to limit rises for most working age benefits to 1% when they come to the Commons tomorrow.

As a constituency MP representing a very deprived area in London, I feel deeply anxious about the policy and I will be voting against the bill tomorrow, very reluctantly and with a very heavy heart.

I can't say I enjoy voting against the Government on these things.

We have a huge problem with in-work child poverty and we are only going to make this significantly worse by affecting those who are at the bottom end of the income spectrum.

One the the things I feel particularly uncomfortable about is the setting up of these two groups - the supposed strivers versus scroungers. It's playground politics. I don't think it is really worthy of us.

Her comments represent a further blow to Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg particularly as they reflect concerns among many Lib Dem activists.

More on this story