Welcome to the Weekly Whip. Your one-stop shop for Lib Dem Parliamentary updates, covering the week that was and the week to come.
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Weekly Whip w/c 14th September
Monday 14th September
Monday’s news was heavily dominated by the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill. MPs from across the House had already raised serious concerns last week when it was noted by a government official that the Bill would break international law in a “specific and limited way”.
Sir Ed Davey made his Commons debut as new Leader of the Party by criticising Johnson during Second Reading of the Bill. He was joined by colleagues who have rightly claimed that it diminishes our position on the world stage and it is against the national interest.
“What message does this send to China, Russia, Iran? What credibility will Britain have in urging other countries to uphold international law if our great Parliament votes for this bill?"
"From the Prime Minister's promise that he had an 'oven ready deal', to his promise that he wanted a 'global Britain', this Bill breaks those promises made to Leave voters." - @EdwardJDavey #InternalMarketBill pic.twitter.com/J3Y2qeZa0p— Liberal Democrats (@LibDems) September 14, 2020
Tuesday 15th September
Munira Wilson, Lib Dem Health Spokesperson, has been keeping the pressure on Matt Hancock since the pandemic first began. Months later, nothing has changed. This week, after constituents across the country have been raising the issue of testing with their MPs, Munira gave special attention her area of Twickenham where some constituents have had to use postcodes in Aberdeen in order to get a local test.
"[Some] have been advised that if they put an Aberdeen postcode into the system, they can get a test in Twickenham. And they have succeeded," says Lib Dem MP Munira Wilson— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) September 15, 2020
Health Secretary Matt Hancock says people should "not game the system"https://t.co/HsEitzkAKh pic.twitter.com/HjhpYFEnXH
Wednesday 16th September
At Prime Minister’s Questions this week, Ed Davey, Alistair Carmichael, and Wera Hobhouse all put questions to the Prime Minister.
Ed focused on the adverse effects of Coronavirus measures on those with disabilities, Alistair highlighted the inconsistencies from the government on how international law may be broken, and Wera secured a meeting with the Health Department on how to limit the impact of the PM’s new obesity strategy on those with eating disorders.
"As a father of a disabled child... I've seen legal advice that suggests his government broke international law in how the Coronavirus Act reduced the rights of disabled people," says Lib Dem Ed Davey— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) September 16, 2020
The PM says he is not aware of that allegation#PMQS https://t.co/SpraU8oMMu pic.twitter.com/uxgeqISRdE
In our third PMQ today, @Wera_Hobhouse secured a commitment to a meeting with the government about the adverse effects of their new obesity strategy on those with eating disorders. pic.twitter.com/SGzx3t3aoE— Lib Dem Whips 🔶 (@LibDemWhips) September 16, 2020
Thursday 17th September
Thursday’s proceedings are usually reserved for Backbench Business Debates, an opportunity for MPs to discuss issues that would not find its way to the Chamber via the Government.
This week, Lib Dem MPs were outspoken in both debates as they were on the Coronavirus furlough scheme and the lack of support for freelancers and the self-employed. Continued pressure from across the House and The Group for Gaps in Support APPG, led by Lib Dem Jamie Stone, secured these debates, and gave an opportunity for Sarah Olney, Wendy Chamberlain, Munira Wilson, and Christine Jardine, to raise specific cases of their constituents who have fell through the net.
Today, Lib Dem MPs spoke during the debate on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, raising the concerns of constituents across the country.— Lib Dem Whips 🔶 (@LibDemWhips) September 17, 2020
We supported the Scheme, but why stop it now? We're heading into more uncertainty and people need continued financial support. pic.twitter.com/k3vb4vdLxy
Next week will see important votes on the Internal Markets Bill.