David Amess, Tory MP for Southend West, has gained just three signatures for his early-day motion calling on MPs who were paid for voicing their opposition to top-up fees in print or on the airwaves to donate their fees to charity if they subsequently recanted and voted for the higher education bill.
So far, the only MP to join Conservatives Nigel Evans and Andrew Robathan in signing up is Bob Russell, Liberal Democrat MP for Colchester. Mr Russell has experience of the media game from both sides of the fence. He was a newspaper reporter and sub-editor in Essex and London before going on to become a press officer for Essex University for 11 years. He was elected to Parliament in 1997.