MP 'insensitive to colleagues' in attempt to raise equality issues

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Commons Speaker John Bercow has clashed with a Tory MP who attempted to raise the issue of equality and standards in Parliament.

Mr Bercow called Andrew Bridgen's point of order "desperately insensitive to other colleagues".

Backbencher Mr Bridgen was the latest Tory to raise a point of order in the Commons about equality and standards issues, amid revelations about Labour MP Jared O'Mara (Sheffield Hallam).

As North West Leicestershire MP Mr Bridgen signalled he wanted to raise a point of order, Mr Bercow said: "If (Mr Bridgen) really thinks it's necessary, I know he thinks everything that concerns him is terribly important, but we'll hear it, let's hear it."

Mr Bridgen, who backed attempts to oust Mr Bercow earlier this year, said: "Mr Speaker, could you clarify how a member of this House would raise an issue relating to equality and standards..."

Mr Bercow interrupted Mr Bridgen at this point, saying: "I dealt with that.

"I don't know whether he was in his place or not, there were points of order raised about equality matters and respect issues earlier with which I dealt.

"No clarification is required, my guidance was sought, I proffered it, we're short of time, there is a debate now in which other people wish to take part.

"If (Mr Bridgen) is interested he can always seek guidance from my office.

"He doesn't need to raise a point of order now. It's desperately insensitive to other colleagues who wish to take part in current debates in the chamber, it's not complicated."