BASINGSTOKE MP Maria Miller was one of 305 to vote against proposals to remove tax from sanitary products.

The motion, brought by Labour to remove the five per cent tax on sanitary products, known as “tampon tax”, was defeated on Monday by 305 votes to 287.

Only three Conservative MPs, all men, rebelled against the whips.

The motion called for an amendment to the Government Finance Bill that would have forced officials to open negotiations with the European Union on the tax.

Along with Mrs Miller, North East Hampshire MP Ranil Jayawardena and North West Hampshire MP Kit Malthouse also voted against the motion.

Government ministers claim the current rate of tax is the lowest allowed under EU law.

But campaigners calling for the tax to be scrapped argue that tampons should not be considered a luxury item and should therefore be exempt from tax.

Laura Coryton, whose petition ‘Stop Taxing Periods’ has attracted 258,980 signatures, said: “Periods are no luxury. You can ‘opt-in’ to extravagance. You cannot choose to menstruate.”

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