Monday, May 18, 2009

UK Speaker clings to job

Update on earlier post...Video and report from BBC on the day's events. A non-confidence vote will likely come, but for now, he's turned it away. A bit of clever maneuvering from the wily Speaker trying to keep his job and live to fight another day:
Labour's Gordon Prentice was the first to stand up to ask about the no confidence motion, only to be told it was not a "point of order" - to shouts of "oh yes it is".

Douglas Carswell, the Conservative backbencher who is putting forward the motion, got up to ask when it would be debated and when MPs would be able to choose a new Speaker with "moral authority to clean up Westminster and the legitimacy to lead this House out of the mire".

But he was told it was not a "substantive motion, it's an early day motion", which led to MPs shouting and Mr Martin having to seek clarification from a clerk.

Veteran Labour MP David Winnick asked him, "with some reluctance" to give "some indication" as to when he would retire, saying "your early retirement sir, would help the reputation of the House".

Mr Martin replied that was "not a subject for today". (emphasis added)
Under parliamentary rules, the Speaker can either ignore the motion or ask for it to be debated in government time.
Procedural staving off, check! Stay tuned on this one...