Points of Order

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:45 pm on 24th April 2018.

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Photo of John Mann John Mann Chair, Treasury Sub-Committee 2:45 pm, 24th April 2018

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. After a debate on anti-Semitism a week ago today, I have received very many kind remarks from parliamentarians, their staff and, indeed, members of House staff, for which me and my family are very grateful. There is an exception to that: one member of the Press Lobby chose to put out on social media, without any communication whatsoever with me, the suggestion that I had misled Parliament in relation a criminal act of violence against my wife. May I repeat, on the record, that I have not misled Parliament and that my wife, who was the victim of this crime, has written to the media outlet concerned today clarifying this in some detail? This outrageous commentary has led to a wave of additional abuse against me, against my wife and against my daughter, including a threat of violence from a Labour party member from Sefton that is being referred to the police. Can you confirm my understanding that members of the Press Lobby have a privileged status within here? They have computers, telephones and lists of MPs, and if they are struggling to get hold of anybody they have the ability to wait outside this Chamber after a debate to speak to us. This member of the Press Lobby chose to use none of those things, and I just wanted your confirmation that the Press Lobby has the full ability to contact any of us, should they wish to do so, before putting out such scurrilous material.