Newsflash: Lib Dems walk out of House of Commons (updated)

The Liberal Democrats’ Shadow Foreign Secretary, Edward Davey, has been thrown out of the House of Commons by Deputy Speaker Michael Lord. The rest of the Parliamentary Party have walked out in protest during the debate on the Lisbon Treaty.

The party’s amendment calling for a in/out referendum was blocked by the parliamentary authorities. Ed Davey had angrily protested, describing the decision as “an outrage”.

Updates: BBC NewsSky News – Lynne Featherstone MP – Nick Clegg and Ed Davey

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46 Comments

  • Quite right too. LDs have 1/10 MPs, took nearly a quarter of the national vote last time around and yet their single amendment ‘isn’t chosen’ ? The walk-out shows passion and helps to underline the new edginess we’ve started to show.

    More!

  • I’d of thought it a quite reasonable amendment as if we left the EU, the Treaty would be redundant.

  • Useful Idiot

  • I’m sure it has been convenient! Like Joe though, I’d be delighted if we have learned to manipulate the media agenda!

  • Surely time to call the speaker an arse!

    Is it only me but didn’t the Speaker, Brown and Cameron vote recently to oppose making MP’s expenses public? Why isn’t the speakers recent indiscretion being related to that?

    I’ not so sure that his actions today are not unrelated to the stance Simon Hughes took back then.

  • That Ed Davey? Cor blimey eh? Wherever there’s trouble…:@O

  • No it doesn’t require principles to walk out, but it is a bonus to have them.

    Like many people I am getting fed up that after 35 years of a third party getting around 20-25% of the vote, we are not given proper recognition.

  • Well throwing a fit and getting chucked out isn’t going to get us the right recognition is it?

  • You go girl!

  • Steve Garner 26th Feb '08 - 6:27pm

    Speaking as a Tory, I think today’s rather childish gesture by the LD’s is entirely in tune with a campaign that seems to be about trying to create an issue where there is not one i.e. should we be in or out of the EU, whilst conveniently ignoring the commitment to hold a referendum on a real issue i.e. the Lisbon Treaty. Honestly, how can you guys call yourselves Liberal DEMOCRATS after backtracking on a manifesto commitment to bring EU democracy closer to the voters. Shame on you for this spinning.

  • It’s like when they all ganged up on Kennedy – sit on the benches and do your sodding job even on bad days…just like the rest of us have to!

  • Oh and I’m disappointed with your immature attitude Alix – if you do support the position the Lib Dem MPs have taken express it in a more mature way than squealing ‘go ed go ed’.

    It’s really not becoming. And it’s much more serious than that.

  • It’s not sensible to go on playing the parliamentary game in a defunct system. To my mind this relates entirely to the proportionality – or rather, lack of it – given to the national third party under the UK’s ‘democratic’ system. We should be much angrier about this and, if that means withdrawing from the system when it is blatantly being manipulated, so be it.

    Think about it – the third party has withdrawn from the system because it is broken.

    In continuing to participate meekly we give a hint of legitimacy to the system. We would do better to remember our under-represented millions more often.

    And let the Tories scoff, they just wish that they’d thought of this first!

  • in any event, a good subject for a LDV poll ? :o)

  • According to the Daily Mirror’s political editor on 5Live Drive, the Lib Dems were victims of a “Tory/Labour stitch-up” over the amendment & he was very positive about the Lib Dems.

    We need more of this…..much more.

  • Absolutely agree this was the right thing to do.

    How extraordinary to see a Tory above suggesting that whether we are in or out of the European Union is a non-issue. How many conservative MPs would sign up for that?!

  • Janes you are absolutely spot on. We should be doing more of this. Challenging the cosy status quo, upsetting the stupid and arcane rules

  • oops sorry that should be JAMES

  • Wow James changed his tune – all in the space of me cooking superquick fresh pasta and eating it..cripes politics is too darned fast for me

  • Hywel Morgan 26th Feb '08 - 8:37pm

    It’s about time we stood up to the arcane practices in Parliament in any case. After all we are (or should be) a party who wants to change the system not inherit it.

  • Very much applaud this new ‘spikier’ approach. If it was a pre-prepared stunt, it was a very good one.

    For far too long we’ve been content with being terribly sensible. It’s about time we made a bit more noise, challenged the conventions and found different ways to get our point across.

    Well done Ed!

  • Old Kent BOy 26th Feb '08 - 9:11pm

    Ok, so table an amendment that you know won’t be in order and then act outraged when it is not selected. It was so obviously contrived.

    I’m afraid it came across as a toys out pram hissy fit to me adn Clegg would have been better to drop the policy when he took over.

    As a media grabbing stunt, shall have to wait until the morning.

  • Well you might want to ask some constituents for their views on why their MP wasn’t working in the House of Commons this afternoon. Or you may want to ask yourself why you’re a member of a party that has MPs so manipulative and contrived…

    These aren’t necessarily my pov I’m just in a very questionning mood tonight and it’s coincided with this story!!!

  • As usual we’ve suffered from bad timing again though. Talk about bad luck to see the hostage video coming out now…

  • Aren't our MPs well behaved? 26th Feb '08 - 10:31pm

    Yes the story about Ed and the lemon slice may come out now…

  • Gosh, who was that?

    Yes, sorry James :@P

  • not a squeak on news at 10 or even newsnight … guess they’ll have to do it again.

    Just a thought though, much as the Tories are huffing and puffing and being all prissy, what would have been the consequences had they walked out in protest too?

  • We’re all losing sight of the very stark fact that Ed lost it in the commons to such an extent that he was thrown out. Yes the other MPs walked to hide it but the fact remains that one of our MPs was excluded from debate. That happens so rarely that surely questions about Ed must be raised?

  • LiberalHammer 27th Feb '08 - 8:33am

    The whole ‘in or out’ referendum seems highly contrived and an attempt to divert from not supporting a referendum on the constitutreaty. To most lay observers, reliant upon the views of others, the treaty is highly similar to the constitution. The constitution would have been subject to a referendum. So why not the treaty?

    And mock outrage by the LDs over an amendment that was never going to happen is frankly disappointing. If the treaty isn’t substantively the same thing as the constitution say so and don’t hide behind a bogus “real issue is this…” argument.

  • Jo wrote:
    “We’re all losing sight of the very stark fact that Ed lost it in the commons to such an extent that he was thrown out. Yes the other MPs walked to hide it but the fact remains that one of our MPs was excluded from debate. That happens so rarely that surely questions about Ed must be raised?”

    It was clearly a put-up job. The fact that the Lib Dem benches were packed, while the others were virtually empty, makes that obvious.

    The problem is that the whole “in-out referendum” policy is such a transparent ploy to avoid the issue of the Lisbon treaty, on which the Parliamentary party is so obviously divided, that it would be difficult to sympathise, even had Davey’s protest been spontaneous.

    According to this article by Neil O’Brien, we have now gone back on Clegg’s “on-the-hoof” position that we would vote against a referendum on the Lisbon treaty:
    http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/neil_obrien/2008/02/
    coming_or_going.html

    That at least was a clear position. Now it’s difficult to disagree with O’Brien’s comment, “What a mess”.

    Chris Phillips

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