LONDON (Reuters) – British lawmakers re-elected Labour’s Lindsay Hoyle as Speaker on Tuesday, as he vowed to be impartial and fair in a moderating role which saw his predecessor John Bercow accused of breaking convention to help opponents of Brexit.
Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a lawmakers meeting to elect a speaker, in London, Britain December 17, 2019. ©UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/Handout via REUTERS
With a lack of majority government since 2017, rivals had more power to challenge the ruling Conservatives’ plans and the Speaker took an increasingly key role in the process of debating Brexit and passing laws needed to implement, or delay, it.
Bercow, who stood down in October after 10 years, was accused by some of breaking long-accepted norms and favouring those who wanted to stop the government’s exit plans.
But last week Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives won a large majority of 80 in the House of Commons, giving him the freedom to push his agenda through parliament much more easily and diminishing the Speaker’s influence over it.
Hoyle, 62, who was first elected in November just before parliament was dissolved for the five-week general election campaign, was re-elected uncontested. He had been deputy speaker since 2010.
“A speaker has to be trusted,” Hoyle said, before two lawmakers carried o