MPs have today voted to support plans to force any MP changing party to face the wrath of their constituents.
Today, Anthony, brought forward a Bill which would see any MP resigning their party’s whip or joining a new party being subject to a recall petition in their constituency.
This proposal would mean that if ten percent of their electorate supported this petition, a by-election would then be triggered, allowing their constituents to endorse their MPs’ decision by re-electing them, or to elect a new MP.
The new Bill builds on previous attempts to force MPs switching parties to face their constituents, including an unsuccessful Bill in 2011.
Following the Bill today, having drafted it, Anthony said:
“In 2019, more MPs chose to leave the political party they were elected as a candidate for than in the preceding 16 years combined. When campaigning in 2019, this was a topic that continually came up and I am keeping my promise to my electorate by proposing this Bill.’’
“In their desperation to thwart Brexit, not a single one sought the permission of their constituents to switch parties, leaving their 1.2 million electors disenfranchised.
“This Bill will ensure that never again can any MP so flagrantly ignore the people they were elected to represent. We will bring this Bill before the Commons as soon as parliamentary time allows.”
At present only MPs who are convicted of an offence and given a custodial sentence, suspended from the Commons for 14 days or more, or convicted of expenses fraud can be recalled.
Following the vote in the Commons, Anthony will bring forward his Bill for its Second Reading on the 15th of January, should parliamentary time be available.