Motion to Sit in Private — 23 Jan 2015 at 09:34

The majority of MPs voted not to hold a private session of the House of Commons.

The text of the motion rejected in the vote was:

  • That the House sit in private.

The House of Commons' Standing Order No. 163 says:

  • If at any sitting of the House... any Member moves 'That the House sit in private' the Speaker... shall forthwith put the question 'That the House sit in private', and such question, though opposed, may be decided after the expiration of the time for opposed business, but such a Motion may be made no more than once in any sitting.

Moving the motion to sit in private is almost always a procedural tactic. By ensuring the defeat of a motion to sit in private at the beginning of the sitting, the mover makes it impossible for any member to move the motion during a subsequent debate.

If such a motion is brought during the debate on a Bill, and fewer than 40 MPs vote in it, then the debate ends immediately regardless of the result (following Standing Order 44). Such an ending of debate occurred on the 14th of March 2003. The points of order following that division show MPs questioning the appropriateness of the tactic.

Moving a motion to sit in private is often done first thing on a Friday morning. Moving the motion ensures it can't be moved later in the day, when MPs might have returned to their constituencies for the weekend and too few members may be present to reach the 40 member threshold leading to the discussion of the business before the house (typically private members' Bills) being brought to an end.

See also What is a motion to sit in private? from the PublicWhip FAQ.

Debate in Parliament | Source |

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All Votes Cast - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party are marked in red. Also shows which MPs were ministers at the time of this vote. You can also see every eligible MP including those who did not vote in this division.

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

NameConstituencyPartyVote
Jacob Rees-MoggNorth East SomersetCon (front bench)aye
Mark SpencerSherwoodCon (front bench)tellaye
George YoungNorth West HampshireContellaye
James ArbuthnotNorth East HampshireConno
Andrew BinghamHigh PeakCon (front bench)no
Peter BottomleyWorthing WestCon (front bench)no
Alun CairnsVale of GlamorganCon (front bench)tellno
Christopher ChopeChristchurchCon (front bench)no
Philip DaviesShipleyCon (front bench)no
Tobias EllwoodBournemouth EastCon (front bench)no
David EvennettBexleyheath and CrayfordCon (front bench)no
Dame Cheryl GillanChesham and AmershamConno
Helen GrantMaidstone and The WealdCon (front bench)no
Dominic GrieveBeaconsfieldCon (front bench)no
Sam GyimahEast SurreyCon (front bench)no
John HayesSouth Holland and The DeepingsCon (front bench)no
Damian HindsEast HampshireCon (front bench)no
Philip HolloboneKetteringCon (front bench)no
Robert JenrickNewarkCon (front bench)no
Edward LeighGainsboroughCon (front bench)no
Esther McVeyWirral WestCon (front bench)no
Penny MordauntPortsmouth NorthCon (front bench)no
John RandallUxbridge and South RuislipCon (front bench)no
Mel StrideCentral DevonCon (front bench)tellno
Desmond SwayneNew Forest WestCon (front bench)no
Kevin BrennanCardiff WestLab (minister)no
Jim CunninghamCoventry SouthLabno
Frank DobsonHolborn and St PancrasLabno
Maria EagleGarston and HalewoodLab (minister)no
Helen GoodmanBishop AucklandLab (minister)no
Tom GreatrexRutherglen and Hamilton WestLab (minister)no
Lilian GreenwoodNottingham SouthLab (minister)no
Susan Elan JonesClwyd SouthLab (minister)no
Andrew MillerEllesmere Port and NestonLab (minister)no
Emma ReynoldsWolverhampton North EastLab (minister)no
Alison SeabeckPlymouth, Moor ViewLab (minister)no
Andrew SlaughterHammersmithLab (minister)no
Lynne FeatherstoneHornsey and Wood GreenLDem (front bench)no
David HeathSomerton and FromeLDem (front bench)no
Norman LambNorth NorfolkLDem (front bench)no
Dan RogersonNorth CornwallLDem (front bench)no
Jo SwinsonEast DunbartonshireLDem (front bench)no

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