The increasing prevalence of intimidation in public life can seriously damage our democracy, as we have already just discussed. The Government are taking a range of actions to tackle this problem, including a consultation on a new electoral offence of intimidating candidates and campaigners.
I thank the Minister very much for that reply. She may have seen the “Exposure” programme broadcast last week, which captured the abuse and threats of death that I have faced, that my hon. Friend Antoinette Sandbach has faced, and that my former right hon. Friend—still a friend—Anna Soubry, has faced. There was also an excellent response from the Speaker to a point of order that I raised on the matter. Does the Minister agree that the systematic intimidation of MPs in this place on the way they vote should be a real concern to anybody interested in our democracy?
Yes, I do agree. The Government have therefore been working closely with the parliamentary security team, the police, administrators and others, because tackling this issue requires action from everyone. It also goes wider than just Members of Parliament. For example, we are helping candidates at the local elections this year to be safer with their home addresses.
The right hon. Gentleman is of course concerned about the implications for intimidation, to which I am sure the question relates.
The right hon. Gentleman should know that the Government cannot have such an inquiry because the agencies investigating are independent, and rightly so. I can reassure the House that we have seen no evidence of successful interference in UK democratic processes, and that is as we would wish it to be.