Tory MPs demand return of full Commons sittings and accuse some colleagues of ‘swinging the lead’

3 weeks ago 12

TORY MPs are demanding a return of full Commons sittings and have accused some colleagues of “swinging the lead”.

Many have joined debates via video call from home after social distancing measures cut seating in the chamber from 400 to 50.

Tory MPs are demanding a return of full Commons sittings and have accused some colleagues of 'swinging the lead'

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Tory MPs are demanding a return of full Commons sittings and have accused some colleagues of 'swinging the lead'Credit: HOC/JESSICA TAYLOR

But with most MPs now vaccinated, there is mounting pressure for the restrictions to end.

Some Tories are threatening to vote against extending the “hybrid” Parliament at the end of the month.

One senior MP said: “Too many of my colleagues are enjoying the long, paid break from the day-to-day grind of Westminster.

“I suspect that some of them are merely putting their feet up at home and leaving their parliamentary assistants to do all the hard graft.

“But this has been going on for 11 months now and enough is enough. I’m sorry to say that some of my colleagues are simply swinging the lead.”

Key workers such as police, teachers and NHS staff have continued to work throughout the pandemic, but the Commons has been largely empty.

One backbencher said: “I can’t wait to get the House full again. It’s soulless. These Zoom debates are dreadful.”

However, a colleague admitted: “If I’m honest, I quite like the idea of staying at home in my constituency and not having to make the trek to and from Westminster.”

Many MPs have refused to attend Parliament until they have been jabbed.

 'Parliament works better when it is face to face. The proper functioning of our democracy is as essential a public service as policing'

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Jacob Rees-Mogg said: 'Parliament works better when it is face to face. The proper functioning of our democracy is as essential a public service as policing'Credit: Alamy Live News

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But with the average age at 51, most will have had their vaccination by now.

Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg said last night: “Parliament works better when it is face to face. The proper functioning of our democracy is as essential a public service as policing.

“I know that many MPs are keen to come back as soon as possible.”

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