Labour ceasefire amendment sails through Commons as Tories and SNP WALK OUT amid chaotic scenes

Tory and SNP MPs have stormed out of the House of Commons

Tory and SNP MPs have stormed out of the House of Commons

Jack Walters

By Jack Walters

Published: 21/02/2024

- 18:46

Updated: 22/02/2024

- 08:50

Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle infuriated SNP and Conservative MPs by selecting Labour's amendment to tonight's ceasefire motion

Labour ceasefire amendment has sailed through the House of Commons after Tory and SNP MPs walked out of the chamber in protest against Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle.

Hoyle, who succeeded Brexit-bashing Speaker John Bercow, sparked outrage by defying parliamentary convention to select Labour's amendment to the SNP's opposition day motion.

A large number of Conservative MPs joined SNP opponents out of the Commons as Deputy Speaker Rosie Winterton struggled to control the fury.

Labour's amendment subsequently received approval without the need for a division.

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The wording varied slightly from the SNP's original motion by stopping short of accusing Israel of “collective punishment” and stressing that Israel “cannot be expected to cease fighting if Hamas continues with violence”.

However, it was initially seen as a major boost to Sir Keir Starmer after the Leader of the Opposition feared facing a bruising rebellion similar to the one he suffered in November during a separate ceasefire vote.

Tonight's walkout came shortly after Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt confirmed the Government will play no further part in tonight's proceedings.

She said: “Regrettably Mr Speaker has inserted himself into the row and undermined the confidence of this House in being able to rely on its long-established standing orders to govern its debates.”

SNP leader Stephen Flynn was also fuming over the Speaker's decision not to appear in the Commons.

He even called for the Commons to be suspended until Hoyle is brought back to the chamber.

Flynn said: “Where on earth is the Speaker of the House of Commons and how do we bring him to this House now to explain to the SNP why our views and our votes in this House are irrelevant to him?”

SNP leader Stephen Flynn was fuming with Speaker Hoyle

SNP leader Stephen Flynn was fuming with Speaker Hoyle


Hoyle returned after the Commons descended into chaos and apologised for his handling of the debate.

He said: “I regret how it's ended up. It was not my intention. I wanted all to ensure they could express their views.

“As it was, in particularly the SNP, were unable to vote on their own proposition.

“It is with my sadness that it ended in this position. It was never my intention.

“I recognise the strength of feeling of this house and its members. I will reflect on my part in that. I do not want it to have ended like this.”

Hoyle vowed to meet “all key players” in the coming hours and promised to “take responsibility”.

Penny Mordaunt speaks in Parliament

Penny Mordaunt announced the Government would pull out of the process


However, Tory MP William Wragg opted to table an early day motion declaring no confidence in the Commons Speaker after he was accused of breaking established parliamentary convention.

Tom Goldsmith, who serves as Clerk of the House, warned Hoyle his decision had little precedent in the last 25 years.

Goldsmith had advised the Speaker against giving MPs a vote on Labour’s amendment, saying it represented a “departure from the long-established convention”.

He added: “I know that you understand why I feel compelled to point out that long-established conventions are not being followed in this case.”

GB News understands that Government Chief Whip Simon Hart warned Hoyle twice this morning not to go ahead with his plan to allow Labour's amendment today.

Sources claimed Hart told the Speaker his actions would “unleash hell“ if it went ahead but Hoyle ignored him.

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