Prime Minister's Update

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:44 pm on 25th September 2019.

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Photo of Anna Soubry Anna Soubry Leader of the Independent Group for Change 6:44 pm, 25th September 2019

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. I, too, am very sad that the Prime Minister has left, because I had hoped to raise this point of order to give him the opportunity to perhaps correct the record and reflect on his language and conduct in this House tonight. It gives me no pleasure to say that I am 62, I have been around and I have seen quite a lot of stuff in my life. It takes a lot to reduce this hon. Member to tears. I am not alone tonight; there are others who I believe have left the estate, such has been their distress.

I merely say to everybody in this place, but most notably to those who hold the highest of offices in this the most peculiar and extraordinary of political times, that the language that is used is incredibly important. Whatever side of the debate people are on, we have evidence that when they use words such as “surrender” or “capitulation”, or others use the words “traitor” and “treason”, there is a direct consequence. It means my mother receives a threat to her safety. It means my partner receives a death threat. It means that people go to prison or receive suspended sentences—unreported by a media that have lost the plot—because of the death threats made to hon. Members whose only crime and offence is to say what they believe in, to be true to their principles and to try to serve this country and their constituents. The consequences are that many will not want to return to this place, and a younger generation will not want to serve this country in the future.