Tag Archives: Hoyle

Jacob Rees-Mogg shows how powerless Commons Speaker is

Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle tried to put Jacob Rees-Mogg in his place after the Business Secretary took details of a new policy to the media rather than announcing it to Parliament first, as is required.

But Hoyle has no power here. Nor does Parliament. Rees-Mogg’s behaviour shows us that the UK’s democracy is flatlining.

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Karma for Coyle: Labour suspends the whip after allegedly racist remarks

Caught: Neil Coyle has admitted making racist remarks.

Keir Starmer may have spent months delaying any investigation of anti-Semitism by Neil Coyle but he has acted faster over a second allegation of racism against the far-right Labour MP.

It only took Starmer’s party a week to suspend its whip from Coyle after two claims were made about him.

British-Chinese journalist Henry Dyer has reported Sinophobic remarks by Coyle to Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle after a meeting in the Strangers’ Bar on the Parliamentary estate on the evening of February 1.

Mr Dyer claimed he had also witnessed Coyle “angrily shouting at a Labour staffer” in the bar the previous evening.

It is understood that after the Speaker became aware of Mr Dyer’s allegations, he convened a meeting with the Serjeant at Arms who ordered that Coyle should be suspended from bars in the Commons for six months. Authorities in the House of Lords are believed to have taken similar action.

Labour has said that the party’s chief whip, Alan Campbell, has suspended Coyle from membership of the Parliamentary Labour Party, pending an investigation.

Coyle has released a statement apologising for his comments (so he has admitted making them). He said he had apologised to all those involved and would be co-operating fully with the inquiry.

It is good that Starmer has acted at last over his out-of-control right-winger.

But it is strange that it took a week for his party to suspend the whip and start an investigation; contrast it with his immediate suspension of the whip from Jeremy Corbyn on the basis of a false interpretation of that MP’s words about anti-Semitism.

And Coyle is the subject of anti-Semitism claims on which Labour has been sitting for more than six months.

So karma has struck; if Coyle got away with anti-Semitism, he has still been caught for racism.

But the incident highlights prejudice in Starmer’s Labour – unless they fall foul of outside authorities, his right-wing supporters enjoy privileged exemption from the rules.

Source: Labour MP Neil Coyle has party whip suspended following alleged racist remarks

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#Johnsonlies – UK prime minister breaks #MinisterialCode by failing to correct the record

Remember This Site’s article a couple of days ago, showing how Boris Johnson had said fears over inflation were “unfounded”, then lied to MPs that he hadn’t?

Here’s the video clip with all the information you need:

I should have added that Johnson was subsequently challenged to correct the record – but didn’t:

The Ministerial Code is clear: he should have corrected the record immediately – but he didn’t.

And Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle told him to sit down – effectively preventing him, it seems, from doing so!

It seems clear that both Johnson and Hoyle have some explaining to do.

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#Covid19: The most serious opposition to #BorisJohnson right now seems to be the #CommonsSpeaker

Hoyle’s law: this is a stock image but it shows how Commons Speaker Lyndsay Hoyle probably feels about the government right now.

When This Writer tweeted on Sunday that a broadcast direct to the nation, rather than a press conference, by Boris Johnson would require a televised response from opposition parties, I didn’t realise that the best person for the job would by Lyndsay Hoyle.

The Commons Speaker seems to be far more keen to actually oppose Johnson – whether it be on the so-called ‘Plan B’ for dealing with Covid-19’s Omicron variant, corruption, or any other offence to the nation – than Keir Starmer.

Here he is, announcing his indignation after Johnson yet again bypassed Parliament to announce the government’s latest Covid strategy in a pre-recorded, televised statement – and then failed to give Parliament even the courtesy of his attendance to provide the same information the following day:

Hoyle is right: Parliament comes first. Johnson’s decision to sidestep Parliament is characteristic of the kind of prime minister he is – one who thinks he can do anything he likes, whenever he likes, and takes the approval of MPs for granted.

Sadly, Starmer is living evidence supporting such a belief – because the Labour leader was indeed given an opportunity to speak to the nation.

Rather than take the opportunity to analyse Johnson’s plans and provide a constructive critique, showing why it doesn’t make sense (why are schools left out of the plans yet again?), Starmer instead dived so far into Johnson’s posterior that next time the PM gives a speech you may be able to see Starmer waving from the back of his throat.

He has laid himself wide open to ridicule:

But worse, by offering unqualified support for Johnson’s half-arse ideas, Starmer has missed his chance to make demands that could have made a huge difference to working people who are struggling. For example:

This is elementary stuff for Parliamentarians – especially opposition leaders.

And now, as Johnson faces rebellion by up to 70 of his own Conservative MPs, he will still win his vote because Starmer has whipped Labour to support it unconditionally.

Yes, it will be galling for Johnson to know he has to rely on Labour for his motion to pass.

But it will be even more galling for former, and potential, Labour voters to know that the leader of the party best-placed to take over from Johnson is most likely to carry on making exactly the same mistakes as the Tory.

If anybody wants to see real opposition, they’re going to have to look beyond England’s borders.

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#Police will be asked to investigate Parliamentary #drug use. We know what they’ll say!

Hoyle: is this how he’ll react when the Metropolitan Police refuse to investigate cocaine use in Parliament, on grounds that they don’t investigate crimes retrospectively?

The Commons Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, has announced that he will ask the Metropolitan Police to investigate cocaine use in Parliament:

Apparently all but one of 12 lavatory areas in Parliament that were tested showed traces of cocaine.

That’s all very well, but we know what the answer will be, after Cressida Dick’s response to complaints about the Downing Street Christmas party of December 18, 2020:

It turns out that Met Commissioner Cressida Dick herself previously said the Met had many retrospective investigations on the go:

But that was a while ago. Clearly the new less-than-one-year limitation on investigating crime retrospectively came in after 2017.

Funny that none of us ever heard of it, though…

Still, we know the answer Hoyle will hear – right?

So the Met Police won’t be investigating druggie MPs.

If it does launch a probe, then the failure to investigate the Downing Street party will be a serious breach of procedure. But we know that already, too – right?

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Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle tries to justify refusal to change rules on lying. Fails

Hoyle in action: he was probably shouting at someone who dared suggest a government minister was telling a porkie.

What a shame that the House of Commons now has Lindsay Hoyle as its Speaker; a man who would rather turn a blind eye to corruption than tackle it.

If he is really more interested in his own expected peerage than in running a fair and honest chamber – as some have suggested – then he’s part of the problem.

It seems he has appeared on the BBC’s Westminster Hour, trying to justify his refusal to alter Commons rules to make lying to the House more difficult:

“What are we going to do? Are we going to let it deteriorate to that level so every time someone speaks you’re a liar? That’s not a good way of debate, that is not the art of debate. I think it’s about proving who’s right and who’s wrong, not taking a simplistic view and saying, ‘well that’s very easy, you’re lying’. There are ways of exposing that, let’s use the right ways. If you feel that somebody has misled inadvertently, let’s get it on the record… and if you need to hold people to account, do it through a substantive motion. And if you give real answers, you won’t have that problem.”

Shall we go through it slowly?

“What are we going to do? Are we going to let it deteriorate to that level so every time someone speaks you’re a liar? That’s not a good way of debate, that is not the art of debate.”

Nobody has suggested this. It is disengenuous of Hoyle even to suggest it. Why did he not use an example that has happened, such as the moment when one of his deputies threw out Dawn Butler after she pointed out how Boris Johnson had lied to MPs – with examples?

He didn’t mention that because it would have undermined his argument.

” I think it’s about proving who’s right and who’s wrong, not taking a simplistic view and saying, ‘well that’s very easy, you’re lying’.”

Again, nobody has done this. They have simply called for an archaic rule, saying they cannot counter lies immediately, to be removed for the good of the reputation of the House of Commons. Dawn Butler put up her proof and was thrown out, remember.

“If you feel that somebody has misled inadvertently, let’s get it on the record… and if you need to hold people to account, do it through a substantive motion.”

The problem is not with ministers misleading “inadvertently” – it is with outright lies, as Hoyle knows very well. And the problem with making a substantive motion about another MP’s lies is that Hoyle chooses which matters are debated and will pass over a motion about lying, every time.

Won’t he?

It’s time for a vote of “no confidence” in the Speaker of the House of Commons.

The good news is that there is a petition calling on MPs to legislate against lying in Parliament, as discussed on This Site here.

It has reached the 100,000-signature threshold to be considered for debate – and may therefore be considered to be exactly the kind of “substantive motion” that Hoyle said he wanted to see.

And has he approved it for debate? No.

A response to the petition states: “The Government does not intend to introduce legislation of this nature,” and concludes: “The House has determined that how Members conduct themselves in the Chamber, including their adherence to the principles of public life, is a matter for the Speaker, and Parliament is responsible for its own procedures.”

Corrupt.

ADDITIONAL: This writer has submitted a complaint to the BBC about the way it has reported this matter on its website:

“Report was not fair/accurate

“In your article, Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle: I’ve received death threats, you reported: “Labour MP Dawn Butler was suspended from the Commons in July for claiming Prime Minister Boris Johnson had “lied to the House and the country over and over again” and refusing to withdraw her accusation. “Using such language was “not a good way of debate”, Sir Lindsay said, adding: “That is not the art of debate – I think it’s about proving who’s right and who’s wrong, not taking a simplistic view and saying, ‘Well, that’s very easy. You’re lying.'”” This was not what happened on the day, as your own BBC Politics Twitter account shows here: https://twitter.com/BBCPolitics/status/1418230091201622024 Ms Butler did not simply say Boris Johnson had lied – she provided examples of his falsehoods. In so doing, she met Lindsay Hoyle’s requirement by proving that Mr Johnson had done wrong. Your article is therefore not properly balanced and is unfair to Ms Butler. Please publish a further article, setting this error right. It will not be enough to amend the article you have already published, which should be removed, as people are unlikely to re-read it, having read it already.”

It won’t do any good because the BBC likes to whitewash itself, especially when it is found to have been biased in favour of political corruption.

But it puts the Corporation’s pro-Tory reporters on notice that they’re being watched.

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Who doctored Hansard to protect this Tory racist? Did she do it herself?

Boris Johnson [Image: The Agitator].

Not only did a Tory minister make false claims to Parliament about racism in the Labour Party, but the official record of the debate – Hansard – was doctored to make it seem that she did not.

Worse still, Victoria Atkins had already added to her party’s tally of racism by telling a fellow MP who happens not to be white to know her place and not be uppity with her betters (although she didn’t use those exact words).

Her shocking abuse of her position has sparked a demand for the Commons Speaker, Lindsay Hoyle, to take action – not just to correct the record but to save the reputation of the House of Commons.

Here’s just one complaint to Hoyle, from Twitter, with follow-up messages to show the issue:

You can see that Leftworks is absolutely correct by watching this video (ironically posted by a fan of Atkins).

She did indeed quote the EHRC’s remit as though it were that organisation’s conclusion – it was not – and Hansard did indeed insert three words to falsify the record.

The effect of Atkins’s words at the time they were said, and in that place, would have been to negate Jeremy Corbyn’s argument – she was effectively saying that he was a racist and therefore had no right to accuse others.

Furthermore, of course, her claim about Luciana Berger needing police protection was false.

Right-thinking people are up in arms about this – and rightly so:

Ms Atkins, who was standing in for her racist boss, Home Secretary Priti Patel, was in the Commons to answer an urgent question on what the government would do to stop racist abuse on the social media.

Patel had been – rightly – accused of “stoking” such abuse by Tyrone Mings of the England football team, whose teammates Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka and Jadon Sancho were victims of it.

When she was tackled on the racism of her own prime minister by rising Labour star Zarah Sultana, Atkins treated her as if she were a black housemaid in the pre-Civil War American south, warning her to “lower” her “tone”:

I make no apologies for adding in this tweet, which includes much of the same video material, for the sake of Seema Chandwani’s observation about the way Ms Sultana was treated:

Shall we have a think about racism by the prime minister – that’s Boris Johnson, by the way – and by Atkins’s boss Patel?

Let’s start with Priti Patel, who locked asylum-seekers from foreign countries into filthy concentration camps where overcrowding caused hundreds of them to catch Covid-19. How many of them died? We haven’t seen the figures.

She wants to bring in a new law making it an offence to help refugees into the UK – even by saving them from drowning in the sea off the UK’s coasts.

Another Bill passing through Parliament at the moment will target the GRT community – Gypsies, Romanies and Travellers – by assuming that they are committing crimes simply because they are Gypsies, Romanies or Travellers. This is classically-defined racism.

The Home Office at which Atkins is a minister destroyed the records showing that members of the Windrush Generation were UK citizens – and then pursued an aggressive policy to deny them services they had spent decades funding, like NHS healthcare and state benefits, while taking action to deport them. One may conclude from this that Atkins is a racist herself.

Need I go on?

As for Boris Johnson, Twitter has been full of commentary on his racism:

That’s right – he actually approached a black woman at a party, made monkey noises at her and tried to hand her a watermelon.

How about some more references to Johnson’s historical pronouncements?

This is now a summary of commentators’ attitude to Johnson:

And – thankfully – the fact of his racism is filtering through to the general public, despite the protection he gets from the Tory media:

Perhaps the last word on Johnson’s racism should be this, that relates it back to Atkins:

As for Hansard: it seems the record may be edited – possibly by MPs themselves – but not if the meaning of the words spoken is changed by those edits:

The changes to Atkins’s speech change the meaning of the words and are therefore not permissible.

As Commons Speaker – the MP who chairs sessions of the House of Commons – Lindsay Hoyle needs to act to save its reputation.

How many other changes are being made to Hansard, that nobody catches because they happen surreptitiously?

And why would Hoyle – or anyone working in Parliament – wish to support or enable these Tory racists?

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Bryant admonished by Hoyle over ‘face-pulling’ during PMQs. Shame it was nothing to do with Johnson

Chris Bryant: what did he do?

Politics has come to a pretty pass when Chris Bryant pulling faces at the Speaker is more interesting than Prime Minister’s Questions!

That’s what appears to have happened today (December 9).

During the weekly exchange between Boris Johnson and Labour leader Keir Starmer, Speaker Lindsay Hoyle halted proceedings and addressed Bryant:

It seems Bryant had left the chamber but returned later, standing next to the Speaker’s chair for a hushed discussion, at the end of which, Hoyle was heard saying, “Mr Bryant I think we need this conversation later.”

Bryant shrugged. Some say he was heard saying, “Fine.” And then he left the chamber.

Speculation about what it was that Bryant actually did to cause such ire in the Speaker has been rife:

Some of the news websites are claiming that Bryant’s offence was simply standing in front of a door.

According to Politics Home,

One backbencher who was sat in the Commons said the row was about where Bryant was standing, allegedly in front of a door that had been left open for ventilation.

The MP said: “The speaker told him to move and he wouldn’t. They then had a face pulling and finger pointing contest.”

If true, it is a shame. Bryant’s reputation would have soared if he had been pulling faces at Johnson, as this now-deleted tweet indicates:

It reads: “Good to see Chris Bryant chased out of the House by the Speaker for pulling a slightly quizzical face which was clearly putting the Prime Minister off from telling his intergalactic lies.”

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Commons Speaker refuses bid to debate government diktats – but it may IMPROVE democracy

Speaking up: Lindsay Hoyle wasn’t quite this active in his speech, but his words were strong.

What was the point of Lindsay Hoyle’s intervention about Boris Johnson treating Parliament with contempt?

He spoke up to say the way the government has used secondary legislation – statutory instruments – to exercise power in the Covid-19 crisis has been “totally unsatisfactory”.

But then he said he’s blocking an amendment of the temporary provisions in the Coronavirus Act 2020 – that allows Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock to use those powers!

See for yourself:

He did say that he’ll be extremely sympathetic to motions that call for the government to send ministers to the Commons to defend undemocratic moves to restrict citizens’ freedoms in the future.

And it seems likely that Tory backbenchers will take advantage of this; all is not well between Downing Street and the Tory backbenches.

It raises a crucial question:

Could Tory rebels bring Johnson down – in the middle of a national health crisis – in the name of democracy?

Amazingly, because of Keir Starmer’s assurances of support, it seems the government is more likely to be defeated by members of its own party than by Her Majesty’s Opposition – and that’s an unhealthy position for a Labour leader.

The public will see that Starmer is not doing the job for which he was elected and will turn further against him.

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Local lockdown to hit northeast England – but why was it first announced on TV?

Speaking too soon: Robert Jenrick announces restrictions on northeast England, on the Peston TV show.

BBC news has announced – around midday today, September 17 – that the northeast of England will be subjected to stronger Covid-19-related restrictions because of increased infections there. It’s not quite a local lockdown but close.

I knew this last night because Robert Jenrick announced it on television, on Robert Peston’s ITV political chat show.

The only reason I didn’t publish a story straight away was fatigue (I had been awake for around 19 hours on the trot by then) – and also I wanted to know what Commons Spaker Lindsay Hoyle would have to say about this breach of regulations:

Some are saying this is another example of Dominic Cummings-style “government by media”, although I can’t see any advantage for the Tories in doing this.

Who benefits from Jenrick’s announcement, which came just 13 hours (and a bit) before the statement in Parliament?

The people of the northeast? No – the difference in timing still isn’t enough for them to properly prepare, if they need to.

The government? No – this is an admission that a government policy has failed.

Robert Jenrick? No – he was announcing something that nobody wanted and is more likely to be resented for it. In any case, he’s widely considered to be as bent as a nine-bob note (see his record of corruption on planning matters).

Robert Peston benefits, because the announcement was on his show.

But what’s the tactical advantage for the Tories? Are they trying to set up some kind of divide-and-rule rivalry between Peston and Piers Morgan, whose breakfast show can’t get government spokespeople because they’re afraid he’ll rip them to shreds?

That seems pointless because the Tories lose more than they gain, if they get another reprimand from Speaker Hoyle.

Perhaps Jenrick was speaking on his own initiative – a loose cannon, as it were.

If so, let’s hope he shot himself in the foot.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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