Tag Archives: Instrument

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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Will the first Parliamentary row of the autumn be over this obscure committee?

By the back door: Theresa May wants to inflict hundreds of “corrections” (read: perversions) on EU laws before allowing them onto the UK statute book.

This Writer had never before heard of the obscure Committee of Selection – but its members will decide whether the minority Conservative government will be able to pervert thousands of EU laws, without a single vote in Parliament.

The Tories want to pass a huge number of Statutory Instruments (SIs) – legislation that does not require a vote in Parliament as it does not change the broad framework of an Act, but only the details of its operation.

For the Tories, the Repeal Bill represents an opportunity to steal rights from UK citizens – and already the alarm has been raised over workers’ and consumers’ rights, environmental standards and devolved powers.

In the last Parliament, the Conservatives claimed five of the nine MPs on the committee, but officials have advised they are entitled to four only, after their Commons majority was destroyed. Nevertheless, they are insisting on keeping their five representatives.

Tough.

They have lost their Parliamentary majority; they do not have the right to try to bully anybody – especially as they are trying corruptly to strip us of our hard-earned rights.

And, without domination of the committee, will the Tories press ahead with their underhand plan?

Theresa May is accused of trying to break parliamentary rules in order to ram through controversial law changes after Brexit.

The Conservatives are demanding to pack a crucial decision-making committee with their own MPs, despite losing their Commons majority at the election, The Independent can reveal.

Now Opposition parties plan to join forces to derail the attempted fix, in what threatens to be the first autumn Parliamentary clash over leaving the EU.

Read more: Tories attempt to hijack powerful decision-making committee to ram through new post-Brexit laws


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