Labour MP Dawn Butler ordered to leave House of Commons after branding Boris Johnson a liar

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·Senior news reporter, Yahoo News UK
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Watch: Dawn Butler ordered to leave Commons after branding Boris Johnson a liar

Labour MP Dawn Butler has been ordered to leave the House of Commons after branding Boris Johnson a liar.

Temporary deputy speaker Judith Cummins told Butler to leave after she refused to withdraw her remarks.

It is not considered within the boundaries of parliamentary etiquette to call another MP a liar.

Butler had protested at being asked to withdraw her claims, saying “it’s funny we get in trouble in this place for calling out the lie rather than the person lying”.

Dawn Butler was ordered to leave the House of Commons on Thursday. (Parliamentlive.tv)
Dawn Butler was ordered to leave the House of Commons on Thursday. (Parliamentlive.tv)

The Brent Central MP was speaking in a debate on Thursday about the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The former Labour deputy leadership candidate accused Johnson of lying about the economy, nursing bursaries, investment in the NHS and "severing" the link between coronavirus infections and serious disease and death.

Butler said: “It's dangerous to lie in the pandemic. I am disappointed the prime minister has not come to the House to correct the record and correct the fact that he has lied to this House and the country over and over again.”

Cummins then asked Butler to “reflect on her words and perhaps correct the record”.

Butler responded: “What would you rather: a weakened leg or a severed leg? At the end of the day the prime minister has lied to this House time and time again and it’s funny we get in trouble in this place for calling out the lie rather than the person lying.”

She was once again asked to withdraw her remarks, to which Butler replied: “I’ve reflected on my words and somebody needs to tell the truth in this House that the prime minister has lied.”

Dawn Butler was ordered to leave the House of Commons on Thursday. (Parliamentlive.tv)
Dawn Butler was ordered to leave the House of Commons on Thursday. (Parliamentlive.tv)

Cummins then ordered Butler to leave the Commons for the rest of the day under “standing order 43”.

Under parliamentary rules, this gives the speaker power to “order any member or members whose conduct is grossly disorderly to withdraw immediately from the House during the remainder of that day’s sitting”.

Butler left her seat and exited the chamber.

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According to House of Commons Library research last updated on 25 June, Butler is the first MP to have been ordered to withdraw from the chamber since 10 December, 2018.

This was when Labour and Co-operative MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle was told to leave after taking the mace from the table of the House during a Brexit debate.

Butler's dismissal is only the 14th since 1992, the earliest year for which the library records are kept.

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