Sittings of the House (29 March)

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 5:00 pm on 28th March 2019.

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Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Speaker of the House of Commons, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Commons Reference Group on Representation and Inclusion Committee, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission 5:00 pm, 28th March 2019

I genuinely do not want to cavil at what the hon. Lady is saying, because she is asking me a perfectly fair and reasonable question, but the way I would characterise it for colleagues, and I hope carry them with me in doing so, is as follows. It may seem a fine line, but there is a clear distinction between procedural propriety, with which the Chair has to be concerned, and legal exegesis, with which the Chair need not be concerned. Those matters are separate and distinct. Many right hon. and hon. Members of the House will be well versed in and have opinions about both those things, but my concern is with procedural propriety and the orderly conduct of business. Whether something makes sense in law and satisfies the hon. Lady’s palate in that regard is another matter.