• Parish and Swire voted with party orders on gagging law

    24th January 2014 | News | Claire
  • Here’s the email from 38 Degrees …………………………………………………………………….

    Disappointing news: your MP was one of those who let us down this week. They followed party orders and voted to reverse the main improvements to the gagging law. [1]

    But there is a glimmer of hope. Now that the government has removed the Lords’ changes, it has to go back to the House of Lords – in a process known as ‘ping-pong’. [2] The Lords could put back in the improvements MPs took out. If they do, it will go back to the House of Commons again, where the government could either decide to accept the changes or put it to a vote again.

    So it’s not over, and your MP might have another chance to vote the right way.

    It’s pretty depressing when an MP doesn’t listen to the concerns of their constituents. But it’s also a reminder of why 38 Degrees matters, and why each of us needs to keep standing up for democracy and freedom of speech.

    The gagging law goes back to the Lords on Tuesday, so it could be back with MPs as soon as Wednesday. This week it was close – if just 17 more Conservative or Liberal Democrat MPs had voted differently, we would have won some important changes.

    Maybe your MP didn’t have enough time to review the amendments properly? Maybe they were leant on by their party bosses? Or maybe they just don’t understand what’s at stake?

    If you’d like to ask your MP why they voted to undo the improvements made to the gagging law by the House of Lords, you can send them an email:

    Or you could write to your local paper and highlight what your MP did and how disappointing it is: https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/write-to-papers

    There have been plenty of twists and turns in this campaign. But the next few days will be crucial. Keep an eye on your inbox for next steps.

    Thanks for being involved,

    Belinda, Becky, Megan, Rebecca and the rest of the 38 Degrees team

    [1] 38 Degrees blog, Gagging law: How we won the argument but lost the vote:
    [2] This is a process known informally as ‘ping-pong’, where MPs in the House of Commons can override decisions made in the House of Lords, and bills bounce between the two chambers until both MPs and Lords agree. To find out more about the process, click here: