Speaker’S Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:33 pm on 18th March 2019.

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Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Speaker of the House of Commons, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Commons Reference Group on Representation and Inclusion Committee 3:33 pm, 18th March 2019

It seems to me that it is principally a question of whether the proposition is the same, or substantially the same. I would confer. I would of course seek advice. I would have my eyes and ears open. I am looking to serve the House, to reflect its interests and to demonstrate respect for its wishes. I simply repeat that the convention is there for a purpose, and that purpose seems to me to be an honourable and valid purpose. I am afraid that I will have to look at the particulars in the light of what is presented, but I hope that the Government would feel that respect for procedure matters.

I note that, as the hon. Gentleman asks his question and I respond, the Leader of the House is playing with her electronic device, as is the Deputy Chief Whip. I did not include him in the category of very senior people in the House, but I readily grant that that is a debatable proposition. It would seem to me to be helpful if people showed respect for each other in these circumstances, and if, when in the Chamber, they listened to what others had to say. However, if they choose not to do so, so be it. I try to show good manners, and I hope others will try to do so as well.