Was Speaker Martin right to come to Blair’s aid?

Was Speaker Martin right to come to Blair’s aid?

    Why shouldn’t Cameron be allowed to raise the succession at PMQs?

In a move that could have big ramifications the Speaker, Michael Martin, came to Tony Blair’s aid at PMQs this lunch-time when the Tory leader asked about the Labour succession.

Amidst extraordinary scenes Martin ruled that the Prime Minister could not be asked about the Labour leadership. According to the BBC report Cameron responded: “Mr Speaker are you honestly saying we cannot ask the prime minister of the country…”. He was then cut off by Martin and in the rowdy scenes that followed he threatened to suspend the sitting.

Martin then ruled; “He has no right to ask at the floor of this house at Prime Minister’s Question Time who the prime minister is supporting for an office within the Labour Party.”

It will be interesting to see who win and who loses from this encounter. Certainly it will be a lot harder for Labour ministers to turn question round by talking about Tory or Lib Dem policy.

Mike Smithson

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