MPs have voted against Labour’s proposal to ban the controversial practice of fracking – in a vote seen as a test of Liz Truss’s government.
Some 230 MPs voted for banning fracking while 326 voted against the proposal.
The vote was brought to the Commons by the Labour Party during an opposition day debate and was seen as a vote of confidence in the government.
But there were immediately questions over whether the chief whip had resigned.
Shadow Leader of the House Thangam Debbonaire asked in the Commons as a point of order whether chief whip Wendy Morton had quit.
Before the vote, at least three former Tory ministers indicated that they would be willing to lose the whip by voting with Labour to ban the drilling for shale gas.
Opponents of fracking say it damages the environment and causes damage to people’s homes – which led the government to ban fracking in 2019 before the moratorium was lifted last month.
In a bid to calm a potential rebellion by Tory MPs, business secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg had insisted that communities will have a “veto” on fracking in their area.
Earlier, Liz Truss’s press secretary said the prime minister would not resign even if the government loses Wednesday’s vote, because Labour’s motion does not amount to a formal vote of no confidence in the government.