Politics latest: Boost for Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle amid questions over his future; UK to sign 'landmark' deal on small boat crossings (2024)

Key points
  • Home secretary backs Speaker, saying he's been a 'breath of fresh air'
  • Gaza vote chaos explained - and why Speaker's is facing anger from MPs
  • Jon Craig:Those who support Hoyle probably outnumber those who want him out
  • 67 MPs have signed no-confidence motion|How Speaker can be ejected
  • Electoral Dysfunction podcast teaser: Could the next Tory leader actually be really obvious?
  • Live reporting byCharlotte Chelsom-Pill

08:20:00

UK's new deal on small boat crossings is 'little and it is late', says shadow home secretary

A new deal with the EU's border agency aimed at stopping small boats crossing the Channel is "little and it is late," shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper has said.

She was speaking to Sky News as the UK is set to sign a new arrangement today which will see the UK Border Force co-operate more closely with its European counterparts.

While she welcomed collaborating with neighbouring countries, she said an arrangement like this should have been agreed earlier.

"We should be collaborating with neighbouring countries. That is the best way to go after the criminal gangs who are undermining border security and putting lives at risk, she said.

"But let's be honest, it is little and it is late.

"Some of this cooperation and sharing of crucial intelligence, criminal information, should have been agreed as part of the Brexit agreement.

08:00:53

Can a Speaker be removed from office?

Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has been facing questions over his future in recent days following a chaotic night in the Commons over the Gaza ceasefire votes.

The initial danger appears to have subsided for Sir Lindsay, although events in the days ahead will be watched closely to see if that changes.

You can read our post linked to in the second key point at the top of this page for more explanation on why he is facing anger from MPs.

Below, we explain how, if it came to it, he could leave his role.

According to the Institute for Government, there's no formal means of removing the Speaker from office.

However, they can fall victim to a vote of no confidence - making it extremely difficult, and likely untenable, for them to stick around.

One famous example was during the expenses scandal in 2009, when speaker Michael Martin resigned in anticipation of losing such a vote.

Sir Lindsay is falling victim to one such motion.

Given his apologies to MPs, he clearly recognises the strength of feeling and sheer anger at his handling of the Gaza votes - but will he accept it to the point of quitting?

How is a replacement chosen?

Were he to resign, it would kick off a vote to select his successor.

Candidates are put forward via written nominations, and if one secures more than 50% of the vote among MPs, then a motion is put to the Commons asking to confirm their appointment.

If it doesn't pass, selection and voting starts again.

If nobody secures 50% in the first place, the candidate with the lowest vote share gets removed from the ballot and the vote is repeated until someone does hit the threshold and a winner emerges.

07:48:15

'The only thing that MPs should fear is the ballot box', home secretary says

The home secretary has told Sky News "the only thing that MPs should fear is the ballot box," as the issue of MPs' safety sits firmly in the spotlight.

James Cleverly said the government has long been "very conscious that there has been increased pressure on all members of parliament".

The fallout over a Gaza ceasefire motion on Wednesday has highlighted risks faced by MPs.

Chaos erupted in the Commons after the Speaker broke from convention by allowing a vote on a Labour amendment to an SNP motion calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Sir Lindsay Hoyle said he wanted all sides to have a say given the importance of the topic, and the fact MPs are facing increasing levels of abuse over their views on the war.

Asked what the government was doing to protect MPs, Mr Cleverly highlighted the work of a Defending Democracy Taskforce chaired by MP Tom Tugendhat.

"He wrote to chief constables last week outlining the powers they've got and the powers that we expect them to use to keep elected people safe, because democracy does need to be defended, defended robustly."

He added: "If people think that they can target members of parliament, they are wrong.

"The full force of the law will be brought down."

07:45:01

Electoral Dysfunction Teaser: Could the next Tory leader actually be really obvious?

Ahead of our first proper Electoral Dysfunction next week, we thought it's time to share what Beth, Jess and Ruth have been up to in rehearsals.

In this special teaser, they explain what the title is all about and what they'll be trying to do on every episode.

And, they get down to the nitty-gritty of examining leaders and their policies - digging deep into what Conservatives might think of their future.

There's a bit of agreement that one of the strongest candidates to be the next Tory leader is more obvious than a lot of people may have realised.

Jess says the person in question has been "ploughing the furrow" and Beth reckons someone else going "tonto" has really helped them out.

Email Beth, Ruth, and Jess atelectoraldysfunction@sky.uk

👉Listen above then tap here to follow Electoral Dysfunction wherever you get your podcasts👈

07:38:53

Home secretary backs Speaker: 'He's been a breath of fresh air'

Home Secretary James Cleverly has backed the Speaker, who remains under pressure this morning as the fallout from chaos over a Gaza ceasefire motion continues.

"I think the Speaker's done a fantastic job," Mr Cleverly tells Sky News.

"I think he's been a breath of fresh air compared with his predecessor.

"He made a mistake. He's apologised for the mistake. My view is that I'm supportive of him."

However, Mr Cleverly said the future of the Speaker is for parliament to determine, rather than the government.

Yesterday, the SNP called for Sir Lindsay Hoyle to resign, and 67 MPs have so far signed a motion of no confidence in him.

Sir Lindsay said one of his reasons for breaking with convention and picking a Labour amendment was concern for MPs' safety.

But Mr Cleverly said: "We should not be changing our procedures in response to threats or intimidation.

"That would indicate that the threats and the intimidation is working.

"That's the opposite of the message that we want to send."

07:20:19

UK's new deal on small boat crossings 'is all benefit', home secretary says

Home Secretary James Cleverly says a new deal with the EU's border agency aimed at stopping small boats crossing the Channel is "all benefit".

He is speaking to Sky News as the UK is set to sign a new arrangement today which will see the UK Border Force co-operate more closely with its European counterparts (see previous post).

"This is about enhancing the cooperation, enhancing the intelligence sharing, to make sure that we are maximising the work with our European partners," he says.

"Our cooperation with Europe is incredibly important.

"I'm very, very pleased that we are building on what is already a strong relationship with the agreement that we're signing today."

He says the government hopes to go "further back through the supply chain of human suffering" and help the EU secure its external borders "in order to help us secure our borders".

Mr Cleverly is asked whether the hope is that the collaboration works well enough that planes won't need to take off for Rwanda.

He stresses that "we are going to send people to Rwanda" as the scheme is "an incredibly important part of the deterrent".

"We need to demonstrate to the people smugglers and the people who are put themselves into the hands of people smugglers that if they come to the UK illegally, they will not be able to stay here," he says.

06:57:56

UK and EU reach new deal on stopping small boat crossings

Britain is set to sign a new deal with the EU's border agency in a further bid to stop small boats crossing the Channel.

The deal agreed with Frontex will see the UK Border Force co-operate more closely with its European counterparts on intelligence and training, as well as on implementing new technology and operations.

James Cleverlywill welcome European home affairs commissioner Ylva Johansson to London to observe the signing of the arrangement by officials from Frontex and Border Force.

The home secretary said: "This government has a plan to break the model of the smuggling gangs, end the abuse of our asylum system and stop the boats. The plan is working with crossings down by a third - but we must go further.

"Organised immigration crime and people-smuggling are global challenges that require shared solutions and ambitions.

"Our landmark working arrangement between the UK and Frontex is another crucial step in tackling illegal migration, securing our borders and stopping the boats."

The deal is the latest in a series of arrangements, including an agreement reached last year with Paris to boost co-operation between French and British law enforcement agencies.

Read more here:

06:40:01

Commons Speaker: MPs who support Sir Lindsay Hoyle probably outnumber those who want him out

By Jon Craig, chief political correspondent

After his tearful apology to MPs on Wednesday evening, at the height of the Commons furore over his controversial Israel-Hamas ceasefire ruling, Sir Lindsay Hoyle came out fighting in his bid to save his job.

Yes, he apologised once again for what he admitted had been a mistake.

But he also took the fight to his critics by spelling out his concerns about the threat to MPs' safety while the Middle Eastis such a highly charged issue.

"I never, ever want to go through a situation where I pick up a phone to find a friend, on whatever side, has been murdered by a terrorist," Sir Lindsay said, in a clear reference to the murder of Tory MP Sir David Amessin 2021.

He also said he didn't want to see another attack on Parliament, a reference to the 2017 terror attack when a car was driven into pedestrians, killing four pedestrians and injuring more than 50.

"I won't share the details, but the details of the things that have been brought to me are absolutely frightening for all members of the House, on all sides," he said. "I have a duty of care and I say that. If my mistake is looking after members, I am guilty."

He also revealed he had "serious meetings" on Wednesday with police chiefs on threats to politicians as a general election approaches. "I don't want anything to happen again," he added.

So his defence is that in agreeing to put all three ceasefire options - from the SNP,Labour and the government - to a vote on Wednesday he acted for the best of motives. And that defence appears to be gaining support.

Read more here:

06:23:37

Welcome back to the Politics Hub

Good morning

Thanks for joining us for another busy day in Westminster.

The UK is set to sign a new "landmark" deal with the EU's border agency today in a further bid to stop small boats crossing the Channel.

James Cleverly will welcome European home affairs commissioner Ylva Johansson to London to observe the signing of the arrangement by officials from Frontex and Border Force.

The deal agreed with Frontex will see the UK Border Force co-operate more closely with its European counterparts on intelligence and training, as well as on implementing new technology and operations.

Meanwhile, the Speaker of the House of Commons remains under pressure this morning as the fallout from chaos over a Gaza ceasefire motion continues.

The SNP has said it has no confidence in Sir Lindsay Hoyle and 67 MPs have now signed a motion of no confidence in him.

However, Sir Lindsay has robustly defended his actions in the Commons, saying he never wants to pick up the phone "to find a friend has been murdered".

The Speaker is under fire for breaking from convention and allowing a vote on a Labour amendment to an SNP motion calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Sir Lindsay said he wanted all sides to have a say, given the importance of the topic, and the fact MPs are facing increasing levels of abuse over their views on the war.

Away from the Commons, ex-PM Liz Truss has been making the headlines with a speech at a conservative conference in the US.

She saidthe world "needs a Republican back in the White House", and said "we've seen Joe Biden asleep at the wheel".

Be sure to stay with us throughout the day as we keep you abreast of everything going on.

Speaking to us here at Sky News this morning are:

  • 7.15am: Home Secretary James Cleverly;
  • 8.10am: Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper.

23:02:12

That's all for tonight

Thank you for joining us for another day in Westminster.

Here's what happened:

  • Sir Lindsay Hoyle mounted a fight for his political life, meeting with senior MPs from all parties in a bid to retain their confidence to remain as Speaker of the House of Commons;
  • The SNP declared it has no confidence in Sir Lindsay, and called on him to resign the Speakership;
  • In response, Sir Lindsay reiterated his apology and revealed "absolutely frightening" security threats against MPs about which he had been having meetings with police and others;
  • Sir Keir Starmer was also under fire, and was forced to come out and deny "categorically" that he threatened to withdraw support from the Speaker if he did not call Labour's motion yesterday;
  • The prime minister got involved, telling broadcasters the Commons debacle was"very concerning", and said the Speaker is "reflecting on what happened";
  • But his leader of the House, Penny Mordaunt, directed her anger at Labour, accusing the opposition of putting its own needs before the "reputation and honour of the decent man who sits in the Speaker's chair";
  • The number of MPs to have signed a motion declaring no confidence in the Speaker rose to 67 - but our political editor Beth Rigbysays the sense is parliament is that he will probably remain in post;
  • Away from the Commons, Sky News reported that childcare providers are warning that government funding to expand free childcare will not be enough to cover costs and risks putting them out of business;
  • Short-lived ex-PM Liz Truss spoke at a conservative conference in the US where she saidthe world "needs a Republican back in the White House", and said "we've seen Joe Biden asleep at the wheel";
  • And the government introduced a scheme so parents in England who have lost a baby early in a pregnancy can now receive a certificate to recognise their loss.

Join us again from 6am for the very latest political news.

Politics latest: Boost for Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle amid questions over his future; UK to sign 'landmark' deal on small boat crossings (2024)
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