SNP MP Drew Hendry clashed with a Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons in which he was soundly told off. The Scottish nationalist was speaking in a chamber debate on the Government’s Internal Markets Bill. While railing against the Conservative’s Brexit plans, Mr Hendry was silenced by Dame Rosie Winterton.
The MP was replying to an intervention made by Bim Afolami.
The Tory politician had asked why Mr Hendry assumed that any food or safety standards legislated in the UK Parliament would “inherently always be lower” than those in the EU.
The SNP member shot back: “Perhaps you should ask your Honourable and Right Honourable friends on your backbenches who voted against your own backbenchers’ amendments.”
However, before he could continue, he was interrupted and forced to sit down by Dame Rosie.
She told him: “The Honourable Gentleman does know that he should not really address another honourable member directly.
“When he uses the word ‘you’, he’s talking about me.
“And I’m sure he wouldn’t want to do that.”
During debates in Parliament, MPs do not address each other directly.
Peers also do not address each other directly.
Instead they speak to the House of Lords as a whole.
Both MPs and peers do not refer to each other by name but by a variety of formal titles according to their status.
This includes: ‘the Honourable Member for…’, ‘the Honourable gentleman’ or ‘the Honourable lady’.
This polite tone is adopted in an attempt to maintain order and good humour during debates.