Politicians' abuse in the spotlight

Politicians' abuse in the spotlight

PRESS publisher Danny Lockwood appeared on BBC Newsnight on Tuesday as part of a panel discussing the recent harassment of politicians by protestors.

Mr Lockwood debated the subject with, from right above, Remain campaigner Gina Miller, pro-Brexit Labour MP Kate Hoey, presenter Emily Maitlis and Times political columnist Lord Daniel Finkelstein.

Topics included the harassment of Anna Soubry, the pro-remain Conservative MP, who faced chants of ‘Soubry is a Nazi’ from pro-Brexit protesters wearing yellow vests. She was also called ‘scum’ as she tried to re-enter Parliament.

All the Newsnight panelists condemned the actions of the protestors and Mr Lockwood said: “If you look at the entire level of debate across the last two and a half years, it’s been driven down. A lot of people feel marginalised and I just worry that it is taken as yet another example of what your typical Brexiteer is – because it certainly isn’t.”

The Press contacted the district’s two MPs in the wake of the Soubry incident. Paula Sherriff (Lab, Dewsbury and Mirfield) said: “I’m appalled by the comments directed at Anna Soubry.

“MPs inevitably draw criticism for their views, particularly on issues that people feel passionately about, and I wholeheartedly support the right to peaceful protest.

“But it is wholly unacceptable for anyone, MP or otherwise, to be subject to intimidation and abuse while they go about their work.

“There is a distinct difference between scrutiny and debate and bullying and abuse – they have no place in our democracy or our society.”

Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin said: “No-one should have to endure abuse and intimidation at their place of work or anywhere else.

“This type of behaviour has no place in our society and politicians along with everyone else should be free to go about their work without fear of harassment.

“I realise we live in a challenging political era where emotions are running high but it is vital we treat each other with respect.”

Share this post