Keith Vaz can only embarrass Labour if he retains Justice Committee membership

Keith Vaz MP [Image: Andy Commins/Daily Mirror].

Keith Vaz MP [Image: Andy Commins/Daily Mirror].

It’s true – if Mr Vaz tries to hold on to any high-profile role within Parliament while he is being investigated by the police, he will be an easy target for Tory snipers and will bring embarrassment down on the Labour Party.

He should withdraw from such roles – including membership of the Justice Committee – for the duration of the inquiry. Obviously, if any matter goes to trial and any guilt is proved, he’ll have long-term questions to answer.

But that doesn’t mean his place on the committee should go empty. Tories who have been demanding the removal of Mr Vaz should also accept the nomination of a Labour Party replacement, to ensure the committee is at full strength at all times.

That probably isn’t what they want, but it is the democratic way.

Pressure is mounting on Keith Vaz to step down from a powerful Commons committee after it emerged he is at the centre of a police investigation over drug allegations .

The police probe was launched after a review into claims the Labour MP discussed cocaine with male escorts at sex parties.

Mr Vaz said he would ‘cooperate with the investigation in any way he can’.

But the Tories said it was ‘not appropriate’ for the disgraced Labour MP to stay on the Justice Committee during the police probe.

Source: MPs tell shamed Keith Vaz to quit powerful Justice Committee amid police drugs probe – Mirror Online

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3 thoughts on “Keith Vaz can only embarrass Labour if he retains Justice Committee membership

  1. Lamia

    “Tories who have been demanding the removal of Mr Vaz should also accept the nomination of a Labour Party replacement, to ensure the committee is at full strength at all times.

    That probably isn’t what they want, but it is the democratic way.”

    This is a non-issue. There is a convention that parties do not block the nominees of other parties, and there is no reason at all to expect the Tories (or any other party) to start doing so now.

    In fact Vaz was voted onto the committee overwhelmingly by Tory MPs. It is possible that there was some mischievous intent in that, because the Vaz story looks likely to damage Labour badly.

    In fact, Vaz’s nomination was one instance where the Tories ought to have done precisely what you finger-wag against them doing in future, i.e. they ought to have blocked his place on the committee. They would have been doing Parliament, including themselves and even their Labour opponents (apart from Vaz) a favour by doing so.

    There are going to be a lot of people in Parliament (and beyond) looking bad as a result of this – precisely at the moment when there are loud voices coming from Parliament asserting its sovereignty over ‘those ghastly people’ who voted Leave.

    Good times.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      My suggestion was that the Tories want Vaz gone, with no replacement.
      Of course there was mischievous intent behind him being voted onto the committee.
      No, it won’t have any effect on Brexit.

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