MP delays childbirth to vote on Brexit – sparking row over Tory untrustworthiness. Here’s the reason

Tulip Siddiq: Tory treachery is forcing her to take dedication to democracy to a rarely-seen degree.

Remember when Tory Party chairman Brandon Lewis broke a “pairing agreement” with a Liberal Democrat who was on maternity leave so his government could win a Brexit vote? Tulip Siddiq does.

Pairing is a longstanding convention in the House of Commons, where the whips of the government and an opposition party agree to allow MPs from one side to miss a vote because of personal reasons or official business. The other party agrees to hold back one of their MPs from voting so the two absences cancel each other out.

But it seems Conservative chief whip Julian Smith has been trying to get his party’s MPs to betray that convention. He was successful in getting Mr Lewis to vote on Brexit legislation when he had said he would absent himself to accommodate the fact that Jo Swinson was having a baby.


Tulip Siddiq does.

Advised by doctors to have her second child by caesarean section today (January 15), she has opted to push the procedure back two days because she does not trust Theresa May’s government to act honourably.

Who can blame her for that?

Of course the decision has sparked a row, with other Labour MPs saying a proxy voting system should be introduced, making the now-discredited “pairing” convention unnecessary:

For members of the public, it seems to have become a matter of honour that every MP should turn up and vote.

Here’s my preferred reason for that democratic fervour:

One thing is sure, no matter what the outcome of the vote (and I think we all know what it is going to be):

The Conservative Party will go into it in disgrace, and can only expect to come out of it in worse condition.

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4 thoughts on “MP delays childbirth to vote on Brexit – sparking row over Tory untrustworthiness. Here’s the reason

  1. Neilth

    I don’t trust the Tories not to rig the vote and I don’t trust certain Labour MPs not to stab the rest of us in the back because they don’t like a Corbyn. Any who do should face a selection challenge.

  2. Vanda

    The thing is, to be pragmatic, even if they do enter a vote of no confidence in this wretched excuse of a government, the numbers aren’t there. The DUP, even though they have been relentlessly and continuously screwed over by May and her cabinet since Brexit negotiations began, will still support them in a vote of confidence! Unbelievable, since they hate her so-called ‘deal’ (it’s not a deal, it’s an obsequious deference to the EU with not a strand of dignity in it).

    How on earth do they think they will stop this awful woman from trying to get the deal through parliament? She listens to no-one. She does not learn lessons from the abundance of mistakes she makes. She is my definition of true megalomaniac, with a very worrying, and skewed, vision of what’s really going on, and what’s really needed to break this deadlock.

    Her words yesterday were very telling – they sent shivers down my spine. She mentioned how the history books would look back and see what happened and judge accordingly. THAT is what she is concerned with, in echoes of 1970s Thatcher. She wants her name in the history books, as the PM who saw through Brexit and got us a deal. She wants no-one else to share in the glory – that’s why she sacked her Brexit ministers (or they resigned in frustration through being sidelined). She wanted to do this deal herself, to get herself in our history books. Her comments yesterday confirmed this to me.

    Yes, history will judge this lamentable government for what it is. They will see it EXACTLY for what it is. The worst government in living history – certainly that I can remember – and the worst, most inept, PM ever, who has proved herself not only incapable of negotiating a satisfactory Brexit for us all, she has also managed to take our great country, the UK, back to Victorian times in terms of social justice, mobility, welfare, education and, of course, health care.

    The NHS is crumbling around us, our schools are forced to beg parents for supplies while others are trying to feed desperately hungry children and buy them clothes, there are more people using foodbanks and sleeping on our streets than ever before, and a lady who tried to claim ESA because she had just lost a child was told by the DWP that ‘grief is not a illness’. Not to mention the hundreds of thousands murdered by austerity and the utter failure that is Universal Credit. Better not forget Windrush and the Hostile Environment policy either, a racist policy overseen by May herself, that saw people lose their jobs, their homes, and in some cases their lives (having been refused NHS care).

    Welcome to Tory Britain. What do you really think the history books will make of all that, May? Your legacy.

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