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UK Covid dwell: ministers promise that parliament shall be recalled if new restrictions wanted over Christmas | Politics


Good morning. It’s a type of ‘morning after the night time earlier than’ moments at Westminster, when the politico-media institution remains to be attempting to quantify precisely how vital or damaging final night time’s votes had been. Clearly they’ve implications for the federal government’s skill to legislate for additional Covid laws, and for Boris Johnson’s management. But it surely won’t be fairly the defining second that it appeared final night time. Till yesterday, Johnson’s earlier largest riot got here final December on tiering preparations for England (keep in mind them?). That was additionally seen as proof that he was pushing the Conservative social gathering so far as it will go on Covid laws. However then got here the Alpha variant and one other surge, and some weeks later a second lockdown occurred with out a lot protest from the Conservative social gathering.

Nonetheless, no-one can faux it doesn’t matter, and one of many fascinating issues concerning the Tory riot is that it was fuelled by a mix of various motives. Principally it was pushed by libertarian lockdown-scepticism, however a number of the MPs had been voting in opposition to Covid passes simply because they thought they might not work (a number of quoted a paper by the SNP authorities in Scotland to help their case) and basic dissatisfaction with Johnson’s management (heightened by the Owen Paterson debacle and partygate) was an element too.

Sheer ineptitude might have performed an element too. Many Tory MPs made it clear within the debate that they wished an assurance that, if additional Covid restrictions are wanted over Christmas, parliament shall be recalled. Sajid Javid, the well being secretary, couldn’t give this promise through the debate, and Johnson himself was ambiguous on this level when he addressed the Conservative 1922 Committee, shortly earlier than the talk.

However now the federal government is explicity making this promise – about 12 hours after it may need helped win over just a few votes. Grant Shapps, the transport secretary, has been making that clear in his morning broadcast spherical. He advised BBC Breakfast:


We now have bought in place now the measures that we consider will see us by means of to the brand new 12 months.

If we did must do anything, parliament can be recalled too with a view to vote on doing that, so it gained’t simply be an automatic factor.

Right here is our in a single day story on final night time’s vote.

And right here is the agenda for the day.

9.30am: The UK Well being Safety Company offers proof to the Commons transport committee on the airline trade and Covid; at 10.45am Robert Courts, the aviation minister, offers proof.

12pm: Boris Johnson faces Keir Starmer at PMQs.

2pm: Amanda Pritchard, chief government of NHS England, and Sir Chris Wormald, everlasting secretary on the Division of Well being and Social Care, and different senior well being officers give proof to the general public accounts committee about NHS ready lists.

I shall be largely specializing in UK Covid-related points at the moment, however there’s rather more protection on our international Covid dwell weblog. It’s right here.

I attempt to monitor the feedback under the road (BTL) however it’s unattainable to learn all of them. You probably have a direct query, do embody “Andrew” in it someplace and I’m extra prone to discover it. I do attempt to reply questions, and if they’re of basic curiosity, I’ll publish the query and reply above the road (ATL), though I can’t promise to do that for everybody.

If you wish to entice my consideration rapidly, it’s most likely higher to make use of Twitter. I’m on @AndrewSparrow.

Alternatively, you’ll be able to e-mail me at andrew.sparrow@theguardian.com





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