Parliament and the Executive — 13 Jul 2000

I beg to move,

That this House believes that Parliament is the essential and definitive link between citizen and government and should remain the institution at the heart of the nation's democratic system; regrets the accelerated loss of power and influence from Parliament to the Executive since 1997, rendering Parliament less able to hold government to account; and calls for the urgent introduction of the reforms necessary to reassert the authority of the House and to reverse the bypassing and undermining of Parliament in recent years.

I said that this place must never be the Prime Minister's poodle. Unfortunately, it has become so.--[ Official Report , 13 January 1999; Vol. 323, c. 259.]

Or let us listen to someone who has spent much of his professional life following our proceedings from the Press Gallery--Robin Oakley. This is what he wrote in The House Magazine :

In over 30 years reporting Parliament I can never recall a time when the proceedings have been

The executive . . . cares little for Parliament . . . unless the government begins to respect the Commons more, will anybody else begin to do so?

All Members of Parliament understand that we got here with the support of party politicians and need to defend particular party political views, but we also have a duty to ordinary men and women who have let this Parliament grow up over 900 years . . .

Parliament is not a rubber stamp for the arrangements of Executives or of Front Benchers . . . If . . . those groups succeed in getting what they want, we shall know that Parliament no longer represents the interests of the United Kingdom.--[ Official Report , 22 May 2000; Vol. 350, c. 687-8.]

the 1980s saw further encroachments of the executive into parliamentary independence. The use of guillotine motions escalated and the increasingly dominant position of the Prime Minister within the Cabinet affected the mood of the House.

the originators of the logjam--

are the Government . . . Bills are allowed into the legislative programme that are insufficiently prepared, and then subjected to rafts of Government amendments as they go through Parliament.

national insurance arrangements for the self-employed closer to those of employees--[ Official Report , 9 March 1999; Vol. 327, c. 187.]

the lesson of parliamentary change is that it has to be carried out with care and sensitivity . . . The rights of backbenchers have to be protected. They will . . . be wary of changes which appear . . . to make the job of government easier.

parliamentary change . . . has to be carried out with care and sensitivity

The rights of Back Benchers have to be protected

There has been a tendency to use the extent or frequency of debates on select committee reports as a criterion of success.

The absolute divorce of decision from discussion in the method proposed, for the convenience of government supporters, will heighten cynicism about the relevance of debate and discussion, and undermines the parliamentary process.

Parliament cannot be organised into a nice, neat tidy bundle so that the Executive takes decisions, tells Parliament what it has decided and produces Bill that, even if they are wrong, can be

presented as a package and pushed through, because no one any longer alters a word of them.--[ Official Report , 22 May 2000; Vol. 350, c. 687.]

The Government are not convinced that a change to the current system is needed.

are superficial and give the impression that they have been drafted with only a cursory look at the summary recommendations, ignoring the analysis and the argument.

vacuum at the heart of New Labour;

is centralised and arrogant. It's all glitz;

the new elite's choice of friends strange;

I wish somebody could stop the spin doctors.

a culture in which the approval of advisers in Number 10 or Number 11 is more important than the opinion of the Ministers they serve.

the era of representative democracy is slowly coming to an end.

I beg to move, To leave out from "House" to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof:

'congratulates the Government on carrying out in three years the biggest programme of constitutional reform for a century, including devolution to the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales and the Northern Ireland Assembly, and incorporation of the European Convention on Human Rights, bringing government closer to the people; and welcomes the fundamental reform of the House of Lords and the establishment of the Select Committee on the Modernisation of the House of Commons which has doubled the number of backbench debates and quadrupled the opportunities to debate Select Committee reports as part of the 48 recommendations implemented so far.'.

[Interruption.] To be frank, if I were a Conservative Member, I would have left some time ago.

Far more than previous premiers she relied on a whole squad of advisers, speech writers, her political office, and assorted media fixers and spin merchants. By 1983 she had completely abandoned conventional electioneering in which she might encounter ordinary voters.

It may be that the age of pure representative democracy is . . . coming to an end.

plebiscites, focus groups, lobbies, citizens' movements, the Internet.

Parliament performs a number of roles in British democracy. Parliament makes the law and decides on how much the government can raise through taxation. Crucially, it also creates and sustains the government. Parliament provides the vital link between the electorate and government. Governments are accountable to the people through general elections . . . This form of accountability is generally termed Parliament's scrutiny role. Parliament performs this role by obtaining and publicising information about the government's performance and future plans. On the basis of that information, Parliament and others form a judgement as to whether the government is discharging its mandate effectively.

Effective scrutiny relies not only on the role of Parliament and MPs, but also on the role of government. The government has a duty to account for its policies, decisions and actions.

The structure of Government, and the context within which it operates, has changed enormously . . . The increased use of executive agencies by central government, devolution

the growing influence of the courts, the extension of EU involvement

We hope that the Government will not be overtaken by events and that when the pace of reform slackens, it will be found that all the separately constructed pieces of the jigsaw will fit together.

What ministers really fail to address is the dynamic nature of their programme. They treat each individual Bill like an item to be ticked off on a check list. But there are loose ends: not just issues which have yet to be resolved, like electoral reform, but also the consequences of measures already enacted.

I do think we are now in a political society where we're managed, where democracy really is about being represented. There's all the difference in the world between being a representative of your constituency, and your convictions, and being a sub-agent of the Millbank Tower Corporation . . .

An effective Opposition is essential to a healthy political process.

in principle, he agreed with the analysis

Parliament is at the heart of our political system. It is the essential and definitive link between the individual and government. Weaken Parliament and, in the long run, you undermine the health of the whole political system.

In the report, we identify the functions of Parliament and the purpose of parliamentary reform. Too often, reforms are proposed for different purposes. Some are designed to expedite the business of Government, some are for the convenience of Members of Parliament, some are designed to remove archaic practices. Others are designed to strengthen Parliament in calling government to account.

The focus of this report is precise and consistent. We are concerned solely with strengthening Parliament in calling government to account. Parliament fulfils many of its functions well but we believe that it could, and should, be far more effective in forcing government to explain itself, to justify its measures, to answer for mistakes and to heed the concerns of citizens. There is a clear imbalance in the relationship between Parliament and the executive. In the report, we identify the reasons for the imbalance and we put forward proposals to correct it.

However, I am conscious that previous Oppositions have launched policy commissions with great fanfares, and then conveniently left their reports on the shelf gathering dust when they return to Government. To make sure that that does not happen with the Norton Report, I can today make three specific commitments that will form part of our manifesto for the next general election.

It would be an insult to the work of the Commission to announce within minutes of the Report's publication which recommendations my party accepts, and which we reject.

Being democratic does not necessarily mean having elections.--[ Official Report , 19 June 2000; Vol. 352, c. 124.]

The people of Britain deserve a stronger Parliament, better government and a revived and refreshed democracy, and I believe it is our duty to provide it.

as a former member of the Select Committees, as a former Minister who has been cross-examined by them.

He said:

I agree that we need to make them stronger and we need to start with the membership.

the essential . . . link between citizen and government

too much of the Select Committee system is worthy but also ignored.

The parliament moderateth the king's prerogative, and nothing grows to abuse, but this house has power to treat it.

The influence of the Crown has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished.

The fault, dear Brutus, lies not in our stars,

But in ourselves, that we are underlings.

The answer is quite simple: . . . he happens to be a friend of mine.--[ Official Report , 13 July 1992; Vol. 211, c. 915.]

The extent to which committees are manipulated by the Tory Whips casts a cloud over the independence of the select committees system.

at the heart of our political system,

is in Parliament to support his opinion of the public good, and does not form his opinion in order to get into Parliament or to continue in it.

holding all governments to account, having been elected by the people for that purpose.

I believe that that is the right responsibility for all of us,--[ Official Report , 9 November 1999; Vol. 337, c. 1042.]

Undermine the authority of Parliament and ultimately you undermine the authority of Government. The more Government seeks to achieve autonomy in making public policy, the harder it has to work to maintain its capacity to achieve desired outcomes. The more it distances itself from Parliament, the more it undermines popular consent for the system of government.

The more I look at this place, the more I fear that the House of Commons has surrendered its responsibility for representing people and has become a queue for office or for people hoping to get on the "Today" programme.--[ Official Report , 1 February 1999; Vol. 324, c. 627.]

The Government are not convinced that a change to the current system is needed.

this should be the norm, not the exception.

Question , That the Question be now put, put and agreed to.

Question put accordingly, That the original words stand part of the Question:--

The House divided: Ayes 165, Noes 304.

Historical Hansard | Online Hansard |

Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 138 (+2 tell)087.5%
Independent0 1033.3%
Lab304 (+2 tell) 0073.6%
LDem0 25053.2%
UUP0 1011.1%
Total:304 165074.5%

All MPs Eligible to Vote - sorted by party

Includes MPs who were absent (or abstained) from this vote.

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

NameConstituencyPartyVote
Peter AinsworthEast SurreyConaye
David AmessSouthend WestCon (front bench)aye
Michael AncramDevizesCon (front bench)aye
James ArbuthnotNorth East HampshireCon (front bench)aye
Mr David AtkinsonBournemouth EastConaye
Tony BaldryBanburyCon (front bench)aye
John BercowBuckinghamCon (front bench)aye
Paul BeresfordMole ValleyCon (front bench)aye
Crispin BluntReigateCon (front bench)aye
Mr Richard BodyBoston and SkegnessConaye
Tim BoswellDaventryCon (front bench)aye
Peter BottomleyWorthing WestCon (front bench)aye
Mrs Virginia BottomleySouth West SurreyConaye
Julian BrazierCanterburyCon (front bench)aye
Mr Peter BrookeCities of London and WestminsterCon (front bench)aye
Angela BrowningTiverton and HonitonCon (front bench)aye
Mr Ian BruceSouth DorsetConaye
Simon BurnsWest ChelmsfordCon (front bench)aye
John ButterfillBournemouth WestConaye
Bill CashStoneCon (front bench)aye
Sir Sydney ChapmanChipping BarnetConaye
Christopher ChopeChristchurchCon (front bench)aye
James ClappisonHertsmereCon (front bench)aye
Dr Michael ClarkRayleighConaye
Kenneth ClarkeRushcliffeConaye
Geoffrey Clifton-BrownCotswoldCon (front bench)tellaye
Mr Tim CollinsWestmorland and LonsdaleConaye
Patrick CormackSouth StaffordshireCon (front bench)aye
Mr James CranBeverley and HoldernessConaye
David CurrySkipton and RiponConaye
Quentin DaviesGrantham and StamfordConaye
David DavisHaltemprice and HowdenCon (front bench)aye
Mr Stephen DayCheadleConaye
Stephen DorrellCharnwoodConaye
Iain Duncan SmithChingford and Woodford GreenCon (front bench)aye
Sir Peter EmeryEast DevonConaye
Nigel EvansRibble ValleyCon (front bench)aye
Michael FabricantLichfieldCon (front bench)aye
Michael FallonSevenoaksCon (front bench)aye
Mr Howard FlightArundel and South DownsConaye
Eric ForthBromley and ChislehurstConaye
Mr Norman FowlerSutton ColdfieldConaye
Liam FoxWoodspringCon (front bench)aye
Christopher FraserMid Dorset and North PooleConaye
Roger GaleNorth ThanetCon (front bench)aye
Edward GarnierHarboroughCon (front bench)aye
Nick GibbBognor Regis and LittlehamptonCon (front bench)aye
Mr Christopher GillLudlowConaye
Mrs Teresa GormanBillericayConaye
James GrayNorth WiltshireCon (front bench)aye
Damian GreenAshfordCon (front bench)aye
John GreenwayRyedaleConaye
Dominic GrieveBeaconsfieldCon (front bench)aye
John GummerSuffolk CoastalConaye
William HagueRichmond (Yorks)Con (front bench)aye
Sir Archie HamiltonEpsom and EwellCon (front bench)aye
Philip HammondRunnymede and WeybridgeCon (front bench)aye
Mr Nick HawkinsSurrey HeathConaye
John HayesSouth Holland and The DeepingsCon (front bench)aye
David Heathcoat-AmoryWellsConaye
Douglas HoggSleaford and North HykehamConaye
John HoramOrpingtonConaye
Michael HowardFolkestone and HytheConaye
Gerald HowarthAldershotCon (front bench)aye
Michael JackFyldeConaye
Robert JacksonWantageConaye
Sir Geoffrey Johnson SmithWealdenConaye
Robert KeySalisburyConaye
Mr Tom KingBridgwaterCon (front bench)aye
Eleanor LaingEpping ForestCon (front bench)aye
Jacqui LaitBeckenhamConaye
Andrew LansleySouth CambridgeshireCon (front bench)aye
Edward LeighGainsboroughCon (front bench)aye
Oliver LetwinWest DorsetConaye
David LidingtonAylesburyCon (front bench)aye
Peter LilleyHitchin and HarpendenConaye
Peter LuffMid WorcestershireCon (front bench)aye
Sir Nicholas LyellNorth East BedfordshireConaye
Mr John MacGregorSouth NorfolkConaye
David MacleanPenrith and The BorderConaye
Mr David MadelSouth West BedfordshireConaye
Mr John MajorHuntingdonConaye
Humfrey MalinsWokingConaye
John MaplesStratford-on-AvonConaye
Francis MaudeHorshamCon (front bench)aye
Theresa MayMaidenheadCon (front bench)aye
Anne McIntoshVale of YorkCon (front bench)aye
Patrick McLoughlinWest DerbyshireCon (front bench)aye
Malcolm MossNorth East CambridgeshireConaye
Mr Patrick NichollsTeignbridgeConaye
Mr Archie NormanTunbridge WellsConaye
Stephen O'BrienEddisburyCon (front bench)aye
Richard OttawayCroydon SouthCon (front bench)aye
James PaiceSouth East CambridgeshireCon (front bench)aye
Owen PatersonNorth ShropshireCon (front bench)aye
Eric PicklesBrentwood and OngarCon (front bench)aye
Mr Michael PortilloKensington and ChelseaConaye
Mr David PriorNorth NorfolkCon (front bench)aye
John RandallUxbridgeCon (front bench)tellaye
John RedwoodWokinghamConaye
Andrew RobathanBlabyCon (front bench)aye
Laurence RobertsonTewkesburyCon (front bench)aye
Mrs Marion RoeBroxbourneConaye
Mr Andrew RoweFaversham and Mid KentConaye
David RuffleyBury St EdmundsCon (front bench)aye
Mrs Gillian ShephardSouth West NorfolkConaye
Richard ShepherdAldridge-BrownhillsCon (front bench)aye
Keith SimpsonMid NorfolkCon (front bench)aye
Nicholas SoamesMid SussexConaye
Caroline SpelmanMeridenCon (front bench)aye
Michael SpicerWest WorcestershireCon (front bench)aye
Richard SpringWest SuffolkConaye
Mr Nick St AubynGuildfordConaye
John StanleyTonbridge and MallingCon (front bench)aye
Anthony SteenTotnesConaye
Gary StreeterSouth West DevonCon (front bench)aye
Desmond SwayneNew Forest WestCon (front bench)aye
Robert SymsPooleCon (front bench)aye
Peter TapsellLouth and HorncastleConaye
Ian TaylorEsher and WaltonConaye
Mr John TaylorSolihullConaye
Mr Teddy TaylorRochford and Southend EastConaye
Mr John TownendEast YorkshireConaye
David TredinnickBosworthCon (front bench)aye
Mr Michael TrendWindsorConaye
Andrew TyrieChichesterCon (front bench)aye
Peter ViggersGosportConaye
Robert WalterNorth DorsetConaye
Nigel WatersonEastbourneConaye
Mr Bowen WellsHertford and StortfordConaye
Sir Ray WhitneyWycombeConaye
John WhittingdaleMaldon and East ChelmsfordConaye
Ann WiddecombeMaidstone and The WealdConaye
Mr John WilkinsonRuislip - NorthwoodConaye
David WillettsHavantCon (front bench)aye
David WilshireSpelthorneConaye
Ann WintertonCongletonConaye
Nicholas WintertonMacclesfieldConaye
Tim YeoSouth SuffolkCon (front bench)aye
George YoungNorth West HampshireCon (front bench)aye
Peter AtkinsonHexhamConabsent
Graham BradyAltrincham and Sale WestCon (front bench)absent
Alan DuncanRutland and MeltonCon (front bench)absent
Mr David FaberWestburyConabsent
Cheryl GillanChesham and AmershamCon (front bench)absent
Oliver HealdNorth East HertfordshireCon (front bench)absent
Mr Edward HeathOld Bexley and SidcupConabsent
Mr Michael HeseltineHenleyConabsent
Mr Andrew HunterBasingstokeConabsent
Bernard JenkinNorth EssexCon (front bench)absent
Julie KirkbrideBromsgroveConabsent
Julian LewisNew Forest EastCon (front bench)absent
Sir Peter LloydFarehamConabsent
Tim LoughtonEast Worthing and ShorehamCon (front bench)absent
Andrew MacKayBracknellConabsent
Michael MatesEast HampshireConabsent
Dr Brian MawhinneyNorth West CambridgeshireConabsent
Mr Richard PageSouth West HertfordshireConabsent
Mr Jonathan SayeedMid BedfordshireConabsent
Charles WardleBexhill and Battlewhilst Conabsent
Alan HaselhurstSaffron WaldenDeputy Speaker (front bench)absent
Michael LordCentral Suffolk and North IpswichDeputy Speaker (front bench)absent
Michael MartinGlasgow Springburnwhilst Deputy Speaker (front bench)absent
Ian PaisleyNorth AntrimDUP (front bench)absent
Peter RobinsonBelfast EastDUPabsent
Mr Martin BellTattonIndependentaye
Dennis CanavanFalkirk Westwhilst Independentabsent
Ken LivingstoneBrent Eastwhilst Independentabsent
Tommy GrahamWest Renfrewshirewhilst Independent Labourabsent
Diane AbbottHackney North and Stoke NewingtonLab (minister)no
Mrs Irene AdamsPaisley NorthLab (minister)no
Nick AingerCarmarthen West and South PembrokeshireLabno
Bob AinsworthCoventry North EastLab (minister)no
Graham AllenNottingham NorthLab (minister)no
Mr Donald AndersonSwansea EastLab (minister)no
Janet AndersonRossendale and DarwenLab (minister)no
Hilary ArmstrongNorth West DurhamLab (minister)no
Mr Joe AshtonBassetlawLabno
Charlotte AtkinsStaffordshire MoorlandsLabno
John AustinErith and ThamesmeadLabno
Mr Tony BanksWest HamLab (minister)no
Mr Harry BarnesNorth East DerbyshireLabno
Kevin BarronRother ValleyLab (minister)no
Hugh BayleyCity of YorkLab (minister)no
Mr Nigel BeardBexleyheath and CrayfordLabno
Margaret BeckettDerby SouthLab (minister)no
Anne BeggAberdeen SouthLab (minister)no
Stuart BellMiddlesbroughLab (minister)no
Mr Tony BennChesterfieldLabno
Joe BentonBootleLabno
Mr Gerry BerminghamSt Helens SouthLabno
Roger BerryKingswoodLabno
Mr Harold BestLeeds North WestLabno
Clive BettsSheffield, AttercliffeLab (minister)no
Tony BlairSedgefieldLab (minister)no
Hazel BlearsSalfordLabno
David BlunkettSheffield, BrightsideLab (minister)no
David BorrowSouth RibbleLabno
Mr Keith BradleyManchester, WithingtonLab (minister)no
Mr Peter BradleyThe WrekinLabno
Ben BradshawExeterLab (minister)no
Nick BrownNewcastle upon Tyne East and WallsendLab (minister)no
Russell BrownDumfriesLab (minister)no
Des BrowneKilmarnock and LoudounLabno
Karen BuckRegent's Park and Kensington NorthLab (minister)no
Richard BurdenBirmingham, NorthfieldLabno
Colin BurgonElmetLabno
Mrs Christine ButlerCastle PointLabno
Stephen ByersNorth TynesideLab (minister)no
Ronnie CampbellBlyth ValleyLab (minister)no
Mr Jamie CannIpswichLabno
Mr Ivor CaplinHoveLabno
Mr Roger CasaleWimbledonLabno
Martin CatonGowerLab (minister)no
Ian CawseyBrigg and GooleLabno
Ben ChapmanWirral SouthLabno
David ChaytorBury NorthLabno
Malcolm ChisholmEdinburgh North and LeithLabno
Michael ClaphamBarnsley West and PenistoneLabno
Dr David ClarkSouth ShieldsLabno
Dr Lynda ClarkEdinburgh PentlandsLab (minister)no
Charles ClarkeNorwich SouthLab (minister)no
Mr Eric ClarkeMidlothianLabno
Tom ClarkeCoatbridge and ChrystonLabno
David ClellandTyne BridgeLab (minister)no
Vernon CoakerGedlingLabno
Ann CoffeyStockportLab (minister)no
Harry CohenLeyton and WansteadLabno
Mr Iain ColemanHammersmith and FulhamLabno
Mr Tony ColmanPutneyLabno
Michael ConnartyFalkirk EastLab (minister)no
Frank CookStockton NorthLabno
Yvette CooperPontefract and CastlefordLab (minister)no
Mr Robin CorbettBirmingham, ErdingtonLab (minister)no
Jeremy CorbynIslington NorthLabno
Jim CousinsNewcastle upon Tyne CentralLabno
Mr Tom CoxTootingLabno
Professor Ross CranstonDudley NorthLab (minister)no
David CrausbyBolton North EastLab (minister)no
Jim CunninghamCoventry SouthLab (minister)no
Alistair DarlingEdinburgh CentralLab (minister)no
Mr Keith DarvillUpminsterLabno
Mrs Valerie DaveyBristol WestLabno
Ian DavidsonGlasgow PollokLab (minister)no
Mr Denzil DaviesLlanelliLabno
Geraint DaviesCroydon CentralLab (minister)no
Janet DeanBurtonLabno
John DenhamSouthampton, ItchenLab (minister)no
Jim DobbinHeywood and MiddletonLabno
Frank DobsonHolborn and St PancrasLabno
Brian H DonohoeCunninghame SouthLab (minister)no
Frank DoranAberdeen CentralLabno
Jim DowdLewisham WestLab (minister)no
David DrewStroudLab (minister)no
Ms Julia DrownSouth SwindonLabno
Gwyneth DunwoodyCrewe and NantwichLabno
Angela EagleWallaseyLab (minister)no
Maria EagleLiverpool, GarstonLabno
Mr Huw EdwardsMonmouthLabno
Clive EffordElthamLab (minister)no
Bill EtheringtonSunderland NorthLabno
Frank FieldBirkenheadLabno
Mark FisherStoke-on-Trent CentralLabno
Jim FitzpatrickPoplar and Canning TownLabno
Paul FlynnNewport WestLabno
Barbara FollettStevenageLabno
Mr Derek FosterBishop AucklandLab (minister)no
Michael FosterWorcesterLabno
Michael Jabez FosterHastings and RyeLabno
Mr George FoulkesCarrick, Cumnock and Doon ValleyLab (minister)no
Mrs Maria FyfeGlasgow MaryhillLabno
George GallowayGlasgow KelvinLabno
Barry GardinerBrent NorthLab (minister)no
Bruce GeorgeWalsall SouthLabno
Neil GerrardWalthamstowLabno
Roger GodsiffBirmingham, Sparkbrook and Small HeathLabno
Paul GogginsWythenshawe and Sale EastLabno
Mrs Llin GoldingNewcastle-under-LymeLab (minister)no
Mrs Eileen GordonRomfordLabno
Ms Jane GriffithsReading EastLabno
Mr Win GriffithsBridgendLabno
Mr Bruce GrocottTelfordLabno
John GroganSelbyLab (minister)no
Peter HainNeathLabno
Mike HallWeaver ValeLab (minister)tellno
Patrick HallBedfordLabno
Fabian HamiltonLeeds North EastLab (minister)no
Sylvia HealHalesowen and Rowley Regiswhilst Labno
John HealeyWentworthLabno
Doug HendersonNewcastle upon Tyne NorthLabno
Stephen HepburnJarrowLab (minister)no
Stephen HesfordWirral WestLabno
Patricia HewittLeicester WestLab (minister)no
Mr David HinchliffeWakefieldLabno
Margaret HodgeBarkingLab (minister)no
Jimmy HoodClydesdaleLab (minister)no
Phil HopeCorbyLabno
Kelvin HopkinsLuton NorthLabno
Mr Alan HowarthNewport EastLab (minister)no
George HowarthKnowsley North and Sefton EastLab (minister)no
Lindsay HoyleChorleyLab (minister)no
Mr Kevin HughesDoncaster NorthLab (minister)no
Mr Alan HurstBraintreeLabno
John HuttonBarrow and FurnessLab (minister)no
Eric IllsleyBarnsley CentralLabno
Glenda JacksonHampstead and HighgateLabno
Mrs Helen JacksonSheffield, HillsboroughLabno
Mr David JamiesonPlymouth, DevonportLab (minister)no
Brian JenkinsTamworthLabno
Alan JohnsonKingston upon Hull West and HessleLab (minister)no
Miss Melanie JohnsonWelwyn HatfieldLab (minister)no
Helen JonesWarrington NorthLab (minister)no
Ms Jenny JonesWolverhampton South WestLabno
Mr Jon Owen JonesCardiff CentralLabno
Lynne JonesBirmingham, Selly OakLabno
Tessa JowellDulwich and West NorwoodLab (minister)no
Sally KeebleNorthampton NorthLabno
Alan KeenFeltham and HestonLabno
Ann KeenBrentford and IsleworthLabno
Ruth KellyBolton WestLabno
Fraser KempHoughton and Washington EastLabno
Piara S KhabraEaling, SouthallLabno
David KidneyStaffordLabno
Peter KilfoyleLiverpool, WaltonLabno
Ms Oona KingBethnal Green and BowLab (minister)no
Ashok KumarMiddlesbrough South and East ClevelandLabno
Stephen LadymanSouth ThanetLabno
David LammyTottenhamLabno
Mrs Jackie LawrencePreseli PembrokeshireLabno
Bob LaxtonDerby NorthLabno
David LepperBrighton, PavilionLabno
Chris LeslieShipleyLabno
Ivan LewisBury SouthLabno
Mr Terry LewisWorsleyLabno
Mrs Helen LiddellAirdrie and ShottsLab (minister)no
Martin LintonBatterseaLabno
Tony LloydManchester CentralLabno
Mr David LockWyre ForestLab (minister)no
Andrew LoveEdmontonLab (minister)no
Mr Calum MacDonaldNa h-Eileanan an IarLabno
Andrew MacKinlayThurrockLabno
Denis MacShaneRotherhamLabno
Fiona MactaggartSloughLabno
Mrs Alice MahonHalifaxLabno
Judy MallaberAmber ValleyLabno
Mr Peter MandelsonHartlepoolLab (minister)no
Gordon MarsdenBlackpool SouthLab (minister)no
Mr Paul MarsdenShrewsbury and AtchamLabno
David MarshallGlasgow ShettlestonLabno
Dr Jim MarshallLeicester SouthLabno
Eric MartlewCarlisleLabno
Thomas McAvoyGlasgow RutherglenLab (minister)no
Steve McCabeBirmingham, Hall GreenLab (minister)no
Chris McCaffertyCalder ValleyLabno
Siobhain McDonaghMitcham and MordenLabno
John Martin McDonnellHayes and HarlingtonLab (minister)no
John McFallDumbartonLab (minister)no
Anne McGuireStirlingLab (minister)no
Shona McIsaacCleethorpesLabno
Rosemary McKennaCumbernauld and KilsythLabno
Mr Kevin McNamaraKingston upon Hull NorthLabno
Tony McNultyHarrow EastLab (minister)no
Mr Tony McWalterHemel HempsteadLabno
Mr John McWilliamBlaydonLabno
Michael MeacherOldham West and RoytonLab (minister)no
Alan MealeMansfieldLab (minister)no
Gillian MerronLincolnLabno
Alun MichaelCardiff South and PenarthLabno
Mr Bill MichieSheffield, HeeleyLabno
Andrew MillerEllesmere Port and NestonLabno
Dr Lewis MoonieKirkcaldyLab (minister)no
Margaret MoranLuton SouthLabno
Julie MorganCardiff NorthLabno
Elliot MorleyScunthorpeLab (minister)no
Ms Estelle MorrisBirmingham, YardleyLab (minister)no
Sir John MorrisAberavonLabno
Dr Mo MowlamRedcarLab (minister)no
Chris MullinSunderland SouthLab (minister)no
Denis MurphyWansbeckLabno
Jim MurphyEast RenfrewshireLab (minister)no
Paul MurphyTorfaenLab (minister)no
Doug NaysmithBristol North WestLabno
Dan NorrisWansdykeLabno
Mr Bill O'BrienNormantonLabno
Edward O'HaraKnowsley SouthLabno
Mr Martin O'NeillOchilLab (minister)no
Bill OlnerNuneatonLabno
Mrs Diana OrganForest of DeanLabno
Sandra OsborneAyrLabno
Nick PalmerBroxtoweLabno
Ian PearsonDudley SouthLabno
Mr Colin PickthallWest LancashireLabno
Mr Peter PikeBurnleyLabno
James PlaskittWarwick and LeamingtonLabno
Mr Kerry PollardSt AlbansLabno
Mr Chris PondGraveshamLabno
Greg PopeHyndburnLab (minister)no
Steve PoundEaling NorthLab (minister)no
Bridget PrenticeLewisham EastLabno
Gordon PrenticePendleLabno
John PrescottKingston upon Hull EastLab (minister)no
Gwyn ProsserDoverLabno
Ken PurchaseWolverhampton North EastLabno
Ms Joyce QuinGateshead East and Washington WestLab (minister)no
Mr Lawrie QuinnScarborough and WhitbyLabno
Mr Giles RadiceNorth DurhamLab (minister)no
Bill RammellHarlowLabno
Mr Syd RapsonPortsmouth NorthLabno
Mrs Barbara RocheHornsey and Wood GreenLab (minister)no
Mr Allan RogersRhonddaLabno
Mr Jeff RookerBirmingham, Perry BarrLab (minister)no
Terry RooneyBradford NorthLabno
Mr Ted RowlandsMerthyr Tydfil and RhymneyLab (minister)no
Frank RoyMotherwell and WishawLabno
Joan RuddockLewisham, DeptfordLabno
Christine RussellCity of ChesterLabno
Joan RyanEnfield NorthLabno
Martin SalterReading WestLabno
Mr Phil SawfordKetteringLabno
Mr Brian SedgemoreHackney South and ShoreditchLabno
Jonathan R ShawChatham and AylesfordLabno
Barry SheermanHuddersfieldLab (minister)no
Ms Debra ShipleyStourbridgeLabno
Clare ShortBirmingham, LadywoodLab (minister)no
Alan SimpsonNottingham SouthLabno
Dennis SkinnerBolsoverLab (minister)no
Angela SmithBasildonLabno
Jacqui SmithRedditchLab (minister)no
John SmithVale of GlamorganLabno
Mr Llew SmithBlaenau GwentLabno
Mr Peter SnapeWest Bromwich EastLabno
Helen SouthworthWarrington SouthLabno
Phyllis StarkeyMilton Keynes South WestLabno
Mr Gerry SteinbergCity of DurhamLabno
Howard StoateDartfordLabno
Jack StrawBlackburnLab (minister)no
Graham StringerManchester, BlackleyLab (minister)no
Gisela StuartBirmingham, EdgbastonLab (minister)no
Gerry SutcliffeBradford SouthLab (minister)tellno
Mrs Ann TaylorDewsburyLab (minister)no
Dari TaylorStockton SouthLabno
David TaylorNorth West LeicestershireLabno
Mr Peter Temple-MorrisLeominsterwhilst Labno
Mr Gareth ThomasClwyd WestLabno
Gareth ThomasHarrow WestLab (minister)no
Stephen TimmsEast HamLab (minister)no
Paddy TippingSherwoodLab (minister)no
Mark ToddSouth DerbyshireLabno
Don TouhigIslwynLab (minister)no
Jon TrickettHemsworthLabno
Paul TruswellPudseyLabno
Mr Dennis TurnerWolverhampton South EastLab (minister)no
Desmond TurnerBrighton, KemptownLabno
Dr George TurnerNorth West NorfolkLabno
Neil TurnerWiganLabno
Derek TwiggHaltonLabno
Mr Bill TynanHamilton SouthLabno
Keith VazLeicester EastLab (minister)no
Rudi VisFinchley and Golders GreenLabno
Claire WardWatfordLabno
Robert WareingLiverpool, West DerbyLabno
Dave WattsSt Helens NorthLab (minister)no
Mr Brian WhiteNorth East Milton KeynesLabno
Malcolm WicksCroydon NorthLab (minister)no
Dr Alan WilliamsCarmarthen East and DinefwrLabno
Alan WilliamsSwansea WestLabno
Mr Brian WilsonCunninghame NorthLab (minister)no
David WinnickWalsall NorthLab (minister)no
Rosie WintertonDoncaster CentralLabno
Shaun WoodwardWitneywhilst Labno
Phil WoolasOldham East and SaddleworthLabno
Mr Tony WorthingtonClydebank and MilngavieLabno
Anthony D WrightGreat YarmouthLabno
Tony WrightCannock ChaseLabno
Derek WyattSittingbourne and SheppeyLabno
Douglas AlexanderPaisley SouthLababsent
Ms Candy AthertonFalmouth and CamborneLababsent
John BattleLeeds WestLab (minister)absent
Hilary BennLeeds CentralLab (minister)absent
Mr Andrew BennettDenton and ReddishLababsent
Liz BlackmanErewashLababsent
Bob BlizzardWaveneyLababsent
Mr Paul BoatengBrent SouthLab (minister)absent
Gordon BrownDunfermline EastLab (minister)absent
Richard CabornSheffield CentralLab (minister)absent
Alan CampbellTynemouthLab (minister)absent
Mrs Anne CampbellCambridgeLababsent
Mr Dale Campbell-SavoursWorkingtonLab (minister)absent
Ms Judith ChurchDagenhamLababsent
Ms Helen ClarkPeterboroughLababsent
Paul ClarkGillinghamLababsent
Mr Tony ClarkeNorthampton SouthLababsent
Ann ClwydCynon ValleyLab (minister)absent
Robin CookLivingstonLab (minister)absent
Ms Jean CorstonBristol EastLababsent
Ann CryerKeighleyLababsent
John CryerHornchurchLab (minister)absent
John CummingsEasingtonLababsent
Mr Lawrence CunliffeLeighLababsent
Dr Jack CunninghamCopelandLababsent
Claire Curtis-ThomasCrosbyLababsent
Mr Tam DalyellLinlithgowLababsent
Mr Ron DaviesCaerphillyLababsent
Mr Terry DavisBirmingham, Hodge HillLababsent
Mr Hilton DawsonLancaster and WyreLababsent
Donald DewarGlasgow AnnieslandLababsent
Andrew DismoreHendonLababsent
Louise EllmanLiverpool, RiversideLab (minister)absent
Jeff EnnisBarnsley East and MexboroughLababsent
Ms Lorna FitzsimonsRochdaleLababsent
Caroline FlintDon ValleyLababsent
Sam GalbraithStrathkelvin and BearsdenLababsent
Mike GapesIlford SouthLab (minister)absent
Ian GibsonNorwich NorthLababsent
Linda GilroyPlymouth, SuttonLababsent
Dr Norman GodmanGreenock and InverclydeLababsent
Nigel GriffithsEdinburgh SouthLababsent
Mr John GunnellMorley and RothwellLababsent
David HansonDelynLab (minister)absent
Harriet HarmanCamberwell and PeckhamLab (minister)absent
Mr Ivan HendersonHarwichLababsent
John HeppellNottingham EastLababsent
Keith HillStreathamLab (minister)absent
Kate HoeyVauxhallLab (minister)absent
John Home RobertsonEast LothianLababsent
Geoff HoonAshfieldLab (minister)absent
Kim HowellsPontypriddLab (minister)absent
Beverley HughesStretford and UrmstonLab (minister)absent
Joan HumbleBlackpool North and FleetwoodLababsent
Brian IddonBolton South EastLababsent
Adam IngramEast KilbrideLab (minister)absent
Mr Barry JonesAlyn and DeesideLababsent
Fiona JonesNewarkLababsent
Martyn JonesClwyd SouthLababsent
Gerald KaufmanManchester, GortonLab (minister)absent
Jane KennedyLiverpool, WavertreeLab (minister)absent
Mr Andy KingRugby and KenilworthLababsent
Ms Tess KinghamGloucesterLababsent
Tom LevittHigh PeakLababsent
Dr John MarekWrexhamLababsent
Robert Marshall-AndrewsMedwayLababsent
Mr John MaxtonGlasgow CathcartLab (minister)absent
John McAllionDundee EastLababsent
Ian McCartneyMakerfieldLab (minister)absent
Henry McLeishCentral FifeLababsent
Alan MilburnDarlingtonLab (minister)absent
Austin MitchellGreat GrimsbyLab (minister)absent
Laura MoffattCrawleyLababsent
Mr Rhodri MorganCardiff WestLababsent
Kali MountfordColne ValleyLababsent
George MudieLeeds EastLababsent
Mike O'BrienNorth WarwickshireLab (minister)absent
Mr Tom PendryStalybridge and HydeLababsent
Ms Linda PerhamIlford NorthLababsent
Mr Raymond PowellOgmoreLababsent
Dawn PrimaroloBristol SouthLab (minister)absent
Nick RaynsfordGreenwich and WoolwichLab (minister)absent
Andy ReedLoughboroughLababsent
John ReidHamilton North and BellshillLab (minister)absent
Geoffrey RobinsonCoventry North WestLababsent
Mr Ernie RossDundee WestLababsent
Chris RuaneVale of ClwydLab (minister)absent
Mohammad SarwarGlasgow GovanLababsent
Mr Malcolm SavidgeAberdeen NorthLababsent
Mr Robert SheldonAshton-under-LyneLab (minister)absent
Marsha SinghBradford WestLababsent
Andrew SmithOxford EastLab (minister)absent
Mr Chris SmithIslington South and FinsburyLab (minister)absent
Geraldine SmithMorecambe and LunesdaleLababsent
Mr Clive SoleyEaling, Acton and Shepherd's BushLab (minister)absent
John SpellarWarleyLab (minister)absent
Rachel SquireDunfermline WestLababsent
Mr George StevensonStoke-on-Trent SouthLababsent
Mr David StewartInverness East, Nairn and LochaberLababsent
Ian StewartEcclesLababsent
Mr Paul StinchcombeWellingboroughLababsent
Gavin StrangEdinburgh East and MusselburghLababsent
Stephen TwiggEnfield, SouthgateLab (minister)absent
Joan WalleyStoke-on-Trent NorthLab (minister)absent
Alan WhiteheadSouthampton, TestLababsent
Betty WilliamsConwyLababsent
Michael WillsNorth SwindonLab (minister)absent
Ms Audrey WisePrestonLababsent
Mike WoodBatley and SpenLababsent
Mr Jimmy WrayGlasgow BailliestonLababsent
Alan BeithBerwick-upon-TweedLDem (front bench)aye
Dr Peter BrandIsle of WightLDemaye
Mr John BurnettTorridge and West DevonLDemaye
Menzies CampbellNorth East FifeLDem (front bench)aye
Mr David ChidgeyEastleighLDem (front bench)aye
Mr Brian CotterWeston-Super-MareLDem (front bench)aye
Mr Ronnie FearnSouthportLDem (front bench)aye
Don FosterBathLDem (front bench)aye
Donald GorrieEdinburgh WestLDemaye
Evan HarrisOxford West and AbingdonLDemaye
Nick HarveyNorth DevonLDem (front bench)aye
David HeathSomerton and FromeLDem (front bench)aye
Charles KennedyRoss, Skye and Inverness WestLDem (front bench)aye
Mr Archy KirkwoodRoxburgh and BerwickshireLDem (front bench)aye
Mr Robert MaclennanCaithness, Sutherland and Easter RossLDemaye
Michael MooreTweeddale, Ettrick and LauderdaleLDem (front bench)aye
Lembit ÖpikMontgomeryshireLDemaye
Mr David RendelNewburyLDemaye
Bob RussellColchesterLDem (front bench)aye
Robert SmithWest Aberdeenshire and KincardineLDem (front bench)aye
Andrew StunellHazel GroveLDem (front bench)aye
Matthew TaylorTruro and St AustellLDemaye
Dr Jenny TongeRichmond ParkLDemaye
Mr Paul TylerNorth CornwallLDem (front bench)aye
Phil WillisHarrogate and KnaresboroughLDem (front bench)aye
Mr Richard AllanSheffield, HallamLDem (front bench)absent
Mr Paddy AshdownYeovilLDem (front bench)absent
Norman BakerLewesLDem (front bench)absent
Mrs Jackie BallardTauntonLDemabsent
Tom BrakeCarshalton and WallingtonLDem (front bench)absent
Colin BreedSouth East CornwallLDemabsent
Malcolm BruceGordonLDem (front bench)absent
Paul BurstowSutton and CheamLDem (front bench)absent
Vincent CableTwickenhamLDem (front bench)absent
Edward DaveyKingston and SurbitonLDem (front bench)absent
Andrew GeorgeSt IvesLDem (front bench)absent
Sandra GidleyRomseyLDemabsent
Mike HancockPortsmouth SouthLDem (front bench)absent
Simon HughesNorth Southwark and BermondseyLDem (front bench)absent
Mr Nigel JonesCheltenhamLDem (front bench)absent
Paul KeetchHerefordLDemabsent
Mr Richard LivseyBrecon and RadnorshireLDem (front bench)absent
Mrs Ray MichieArgyll and ButeLDemabsent
Mark OatenWinchesterLDemabsent
Adrian SandersTorbayLDem (front bench)absent
Jim WallaceOrkney and ShetlandLDemabsent
Steve WebbNorthavonLDem (front bench)absent
Mr Ieuan Wyn JonesYnys MônPCabsent
Elfyn LlwydMeirionnydd Nant ConwyPC (front bench)absent
Mr Simon ThomasCeredigionPCabsent
Mr Dafydd WigleyCaernarfonPCabsent
Mr John HumeFoyleSDLPabsent
Mr Seamus MallonNewry and ArmaghSDLPabsent
Eddie McGradySouth DownSDLPabsent
Gerry AdamsBelfast WestSFabsent
Martin McGuinnessMid UlsterSFabsent
Roseanna CunninghamPerthSNPabsent
Margaret EwingMoraySNPabsent
Alasdair MorganGalloway and Upper NithsdaleSNPabsent
Alex SalmondBanff and BuchanSNP (front bench)absent
John SwinneyNorth TaysideSNPabsent
Andrew WelshAngusSNPabsent
Miss Betty BoothroydWest Bromwich WestSpeaker (front bench)absent
Robert McCartneyNorth DownUKUPabsent
Mr Roy BeggsEast AntrimUUPaye
Jeffrey M. DonaldsonLagan ValleyUUP (front bench)absent
Mr Ken MaginnisFermanagh and South TyroneUUPabsent
Mr William RossEast LondonderryUUPabsent
Martin SmythBelfast SouthUUPabsent
John TaylorStrangfordUUPabsent
Mr William ThompsonWest TyroneUUPabsent
Rt Hon David TrimbleUpper BannUUP (front bench)absent
Mr Cecil WalkerBelfast NorthUUPabsent

About the Project

The Public Whip is a not-for-profit, open source website created in 2003 by Francis Irving and Julian Todd and now run by Bairwell Ltd.

There are lots of plans afoot, including extensive redevelopment of the site and plans for new functionality. To keep up with what's happening, please check out the blog. We're working on updating all the contact details throughout the site, but if you'd like to talk to us about the project, please email [email protected]

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