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South Shields premier political blog

Jack has a point

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Clerk to the House of Commons hits out at  new Bill

If it weren’t bad enough saying that the new Bill would emaciate the power of the Commons, Malcolm Jack, the senior official who oversees the rules of the House of Commons, has raised serious concerns about the “constitutional implications” of Mr Brown’s plans and warned they may curb MPs’ freedom of speech.

This one passed us by, but by tradition Members of Parliament can use their position of privilege to say many things within the House, that they would not be ordinarily be allowed to say outside, for fear of some sort of legal action. Their’s is almost a unique priviliege in this respect and this protection from pursuers affords them a little more freedom of speech than most. MPs have sometimes used this privilege to name people in Parliament and cause investigations where it might not otherwise have been possible or quite as effective, and therefore is a right to be used sparingly and after suitable advice, and a right which is threatened by the powers proposed in the new Bill.

We should note that once again Gordon Brown’s Labour government in it’s absolute haste to be “seen to be doing something” about a problem which is often self created, is responsible for the writing of bad laws, and the manipulation of the Parliamentary timetable to force measures through increases the likelihood of further destructions of long held rights, privileges, and freedoms which ultimately affect us all. Brown’s attempts to clean up the sleaze in Parliament are in danger of making a complete mess, you cannot make a velvet purse from a sow’s ear.

All the more reason for MPs to scrutinising the works of the government with even more vigour and application.

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Written by curly

June 27, 2009 at 9:52 am

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