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Christian MP calls on John Bercow to review his position on Trump

Tue 07 Feb 2017
By Marcus Jones

A Christian MP has called on the House of Commons' speaker to "examine his position" after he said Donald Trump should not be allowed to address Parliament.

Sir Gerald Howarth has been speaking to Premier after Speaker John Bercow told MPs in the House of Commons yesterday that he was "strongly opposed" to the idea of an address to both houses of Parliament by Trump.

Responding to a point of order raised in the Commons by Christian Labour MP Stephen Doughty, Bercow said: "I must say to you, to all who signed your early day motion and to others with strong views about this matter on either side of the argument, that before the imposition of the migrant ban I would myself have been strongly opposed to an address by President Trump in Westminster Hall.

"After the imposition of the migrant ban by President Trump, I am even more strongly opposed to an address by President Trump in Westminster Hall."

PA

 

Bercow's comments were met with applause from some MPs but were criticised by others.

Christian MP Sir Gerald Howarth - who was in Parliament at the time - told Premier News Hour Bercow's comments had left him "gobsmacked".

Sir Gerald said: "Well, I was in the chamber when he made his comments and I was completely and utterly gobsmacked.

"I think for the speaker of the House of Commons to tread on matters of great diplomatic sensitivity in this very deliberate way is very damaging to our relationship with our principle ally.

"I certainly think that he needs to examine his position. I get on with him very well but I'm astonished by what he did."

The MP for Aldershot added: "The speaker of the House of Commons is supposed to be neutral and impartial but he was clearly very partisan over an issue where the British government, with great sensitivity, had driven a course which resulted in a change of policy in the United States beneficial to the UK, namely getting the president to review his ideas about NATO. "

Sir Gerald said that he hoped the President was able to distinguish between a "deliberately provocative remark" from the speaker of the House of Commons and the opinions of the British government.

Listen to Antony Bushfield speaking to Sir Gerald Howarth here:

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