8 June 2020 – the overnight press releases

  • Lib Dems to use emergency debate to warn Rees-Mogg is threatening public health
  • Covid-19 has exposed politics as not fit for purpose, Lib Dems warn

Lib Dems to use emergency debate to warn Rees-Mogg is threatening public health

The Liberal Democrats will today use an emergency debate in Parliament to warn Jacob Rees-Mogg that if an MP falls ill to COVID-19 or there is a spike in cases because of travel to and from London then he must take personal responsibility and resign.

The debate, secured by Liberal Democrat Chief Whip Alistair Carmichael MP, was agreed following alarm at Business Secretary Alok Sharma becoming unwell with COVID-19 symptoms in Parliament last week.

The Orkney and Shetland MP believes Mr Sharma’s condition “should be a wakeup call for the Government” and makes clear that forcing physical proceedings “exposes MPs, our families and our constituents to risk.”

The Liberal Democrats are demanding the Government accept the public health risks of denying MPs who are shielding the right to represent their constituents and commit to remote voting.

Ahead of the debate, Liberal Democrat MP Alistair Carmichael said:

Tens of thousands of people have already died during this pandemic. To protect vulnerable people, we should all follow public health advice and work from home when we can.

I am relieved that Mr Sharma does not have coronavirus, but his condition last week should be a wakeup call for the Government. Forcing physical proceedings exposes MPs, our families and our constituents to risk.

There are no two ways about it. If an MP falls ill to COVID-19 or there is a spike in cases because of travel to and from London then Jacob Rees-Mogg must be ready to take personal responsibility and resign.

The Government has the chance to think again. Remote voting worked and they must change course and allow all communities to have their voice heard.

Covid-19 has exposed politics as not fit for purpose, Lib Dems warn

The Liberal Democrats will today lead a debate in the House of Commons calling for a “radical overhaul” of Westminster politics, warning it is “not for purpose” to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

The debate – the first in the House of Commons chamber on electoral reform since 2016 – will be led by Liberal Democrat Constitutional Affairs spokesperson Wendy Chamberlain.

The North East Fife MP is expected to declare that Westminster’s broken political system is shutting out people who “need their voices heard now more than ever” during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Liberal Democrats will use the debate to call on other political parties to join them in getting behind change and reforming the way people elect MPs with a proportional voting system.

Speaking ahead of the debate, Liberal Democrat MP Wendy Chamberlain said:

If the last three years have shown politics isn’t working for people then the coronavirus crisis has made it clearer than ever that reform is needed.

Covid-19 has exposed the political culture in Westminster as not fit for purpose. Our democracy doesn’t need piecemeal change, it needs a radical overhaul.

Over the coming months and years we’re going to face numerous issues as we seek to overcome and recover from the coronavirus crisis. We need to work together – yet our Westminster politics is adversarial and divisive.

Simply put, that means the true variety of the electorate’s voices are not heard. Many of those people are the same people who need their voices heard now more than ever. It’s time all parties got behind change.

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2 Comments

  • The Virus dominates the media. Their is little coverage of anything else. The lowering of food standards to get an American deal is not mentioned for one.What has Gove,s department achieved to date for another?

  • LDV quite rightly celebrates and salutes all sort of festival and events, often wishing this group or that group a Happy Whatever.

    It would have been appreciated if they could have done this for the 76th Anniversary of D-Day. A lot of people have or had relatives involved….. many thousands didn’t come back and some that did were irreparably damaged……. and there are still a few left who did come back. Without them there would have been no European dream.

    Maybe next year ?

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