Thursday, 10 June 2010

New deputy speakers

The good thing about John Burcow's election and re-appointment as speaker of the House of Commons is that a strongly pro-abortion politician became non-partisan. He cannot take part in debates or vote on any issue (unless there is a tie) and has an obligation to be impartial. The Rt Hon Burcow has been an outspoken pro-abortionist and supported the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill. It is good that he is now effectively "nutralised".

On Tuesday, the three deputy leaders of the House of Commons for the new parliament were elected. These stand in for the speaker when he is busy with other things or is on leave. One of the new deputies is Dawn Primarolo. The fact that she has been "neutralised" is great news.

Ms Primarolo was the minister in charge of that hideous Human Fertilisation and Embryology (HFE) Bill that removed the need for a father, legalised the creation of human/animal hybrid embryos and widened the scope for human embryonic experimentation. As I reported at the time, she claimed that the bill was "a handshake" between science and ethics.

The MP for Bristol South is also pro-abortion, voting against all amendments to lower the time limit for abortion (even thought, as I've said many times, these proposals were the wrong way to go in attempting to restrict the Abortion Act). The fact that she will no longer be able to vote on these issues (unless there is a tie when she is in the chair) confirms that there is one less pro-abortion member of parliament who can have their say.

However, another new deputy speaker, Nigel Evans, appears to be a loss to the pro-life lobby. He was one of only 72 MPs that voted for a reduction in the time limit to 12 weeks, indicating he is sympathetic. In addition, the winner of the deputy speaker election, Chorley MP Lindsay Hoyle, also appears to be a loss. He was a rebel on the Mental Capacity Bill and even called for a free vote on the clauses that legalised euthanasia by omission. He also voted against several aspects of the HFE Bill and wrote to the Prime Minister to ask for a free vote. However, he did not vote for the 12 week clause.
I qualify my observations by saying I don't have any detailed knowledge of these two MPs views on the all important life issues (please leave comments if you know anything more).

Since 1801, there have been only 49 instances of tied divisions. Interestingly, however, one of the last occasions came on 21 June 1990, on an amendment to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill. If it comes to that sort of scenario again, I think we've got a better chance with Evans and Hoyle than Primarolo and Burcow.

1 comment:

Leonardo de la Paor said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.