LONDON (NWN) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson wants to talk about climate change. But his opponents want to focus on the sled.
As the United Nations climate summit aimed at halting catastrophic global warming in Glasgow, Scotland, enters its final week, host leader Johnson has faced criticism in London over his efforts to change the system that oversees lawmakers’ standards. facing.
The House of Commons will hold an emergency debate on political ethics on Monday after the government tried to prevent the suspension of a Conservative MP found guilty of violating lobbying rules.
Opposition parties say the episode has exposed a Conservative government that flaunts rules and wants a public inquiry into allegations of corruption.
Labor Party leader Keir Starmer said Johnson should apologize to the nation and “clean up the dirty Augean stables he built.”
The lobbying episode is the latest to fuel allegations that Johnson and his Conservative government do not follow the rules that apply to everyone.
Lawsuits have been launched over hundreds of millions of pounds (dollars) in contracts by the government to provide equipment and services during the coronavirus pandemic – often in haste and with little lapse.
Home Secretary Priti Patel was allowed to hire staff members after she was found threatening them. Johnson himself has been criticized for accepting expensive holidays in Mustique and Spain, and facing scrutiny by Parliament’s standards watchdog over the source of the money used to renovate his apartment in Downing Street, the prime minister’s official residence. Does matter.
The issue reached boiling point after the House of Commons Standards Committee recommended a 30-day suspension for Conservative legislator Owen Paterson to lobby on behalf of the two companies, paying him more than £100,000 ($137,000) annually. Were were The Commons Standards Committee said Patterson’s actions were “a serious case of paid advocacy” and that it “brought the House into disrepute.”
Instead of supporting the committee’s decision, as has been the case in all similar cases for decades, the government ordered Conservative lawmakers to oppose it and instead call for an overhaul of the entire standards process.
That vote on Wednesday sparked fury – not just from the opposition. The generally supportive newspapers reflected the anger, with the Daily Mail declaring: “Shameless MP slicks back in to sledge.”
The next day the government took a U-turn and said that it would seek consensus of all parties on a radical change in the disciplinary process. After 24 years as an MP, Patterson abruptly left Parliament.
Environment Minister George Eustice said the commotion was a “storm in a cup” of little interest to the wider public.
But former Conservative prime minister John Major hit out at Johnson, saying the way the government acted was “shameful, wrong and not worthy of this or really any government.”
“There is a general feeling of ‘we are now masters’ about their behaviour,” Major told the BBC. “It has to stop, it has to stop soon.”