Sir Lindsay Hoyle has been elected by MPs as the new House of Commons Speaker – one of the most senior and influential roles in politics.
The Labor MP for Chorley, who was a deputy speaker, takes over the role fromJohn Bercowimmediately.
He beat his nearest rival, Labor MP Chris Bryant, by 112 votes. Other candidates were knocked out in three previous rounds of voting.
As tradition dictates, Sir Lindsay was dragged to the chair by his colleagues. This is a nod to the fact that, in the past, the Speaker was tasked with taking messages to the monarch of the day – which could be a dangerous occupation.
In his victory speech, he declared : “This house will change, but it will change for the better.
“I hope this house will be once again be a great, respected house not just here but across the world. We’ve got to make sure that tarnish is polished away.”
Sir Lindsay also paid tribute to his daughter Natalie, who killed herself in December 2017, saying: “She was everything to all of us – she will always be missed, but she will always be in our hearts. “
Speaking to Sky News shortly after his victory, Sir Lindsay said: “I think I will bring a new style … Anyone who feels like there’s something not quite right my door will always be open and I want to make the changes for the future.
“I realize this house has become tarnished in the public image. I want to ensure that the public have faith in democracy again and I think that will come by making sure we do the right things by everybody who works here.
“I want to ensure that people want to become an MP again, that they feel safe in being an MP and that’s part of the challenge ahead for me. “
Sir Lindsay will get one day in the chair on Tuesday to oversee valedictory speeches from those not standing in thegeneral electionon Thursday 12 December 2019, before parliament is officially shut down for the campaign period.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid tribute to the “extremely strong field” of candidates but highlighted Sir Lindsay’s “many good qualities” – including kindness and reasonableness.
Meanwhile, Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “I know you want to make this an even more compassionate and humane place to work.”
The new role means Sir Lindsay is in charge of keeping order in the Commons and making crucial decisions about how matters are debated and voted on – but must remain impartial.
His main pledge to MPs was to be a fair Speaker, drawing on his experience sometimes overseeing Prime Minister’s Questions and the budget.
Sir Lindsay also pledged to call MPs to speak in debates based on their relevance to the topic and do away with a “pecking order”, as well as carry on fighting to protect from abuse politicians, their families and staff.
He becomes the Commons’ 158 th speaker.
Having served as an MP since 1997, Sir Lindsay was knighted last year for parliamentary and political services.
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