DEAR EDITOR,

I REFER to the letter from M. Irving, published in Thursday's Bulletin, regarding John Bercow's election as Speaker of the House of Commons. She states that the Bercow has now “disowned” the Tory party because in a speech he referred to it as his “former party”. In fact, he had no option but to refer to it as his “former party”.

The position is that the Speaker must be impartial and, therefore, it is a strict rule of parliamentary procedure that upon election as Speaker, he or she must immediately resign from their political party. The rule continues even after they cease to be Speaker, they can never again participate in political matters and if appointed to the House of Lords (as normally is the case), they must sit as a crossbencher.

I have no idea whether the new Speaker is the right person to resolve the present parliamentary problems, but certainly no criticism can be levelled at him for leaving the Tory party.

Yours, David Barter
Es Capdella

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