Video: Gardiner busts Marr misleading viewers about how easily govt can be removed

gardiner marr.png
Labour MP Barry Gardiner on this morning’s Marr

Earlier today, Labour’s excellent Barry Gardiner appeared on the BBC’s Marr show to discuss not only Brexit but the Theresa May’s likely contempt of Parliament for withholding its legal advice on May’s Brexit deal – after the government chose not even to contest a parliamentary vote to force it to release the information.

And he exposed Marr following a line on the removal of May’s lame-duck government that the BBC has, until now, been routinely – and completely misleadingly – pushing, when he intervened to correct Marr in mid-flow:

Two weeks ago, the SKWAWKBOX highlighted the provisions of the Fixed Term Parliaments Act (FTPA) – what Marr called the ‘Quinquennial Act‘. Although the mainstream media have, for the most part, continued to claim that the FTPA requires a two-thirds majority of all MPs for an early general election to be triggered, that is only the first part of the Act’s provisions.


In the next section, it requires only a simple majority of those voting to remove the government via a vote of no confidence – the usual ‘fifty percent plus one’ – putting the removal of the government within reach in a hung Parliament where the DUP has abandoned its ‘confidence and supply’ pact with the Tories.

Marr pushed the ‘needs two-thirds’ line – but when Gardiner corrected him, he immediately responded,

There’s the alternative way. I know.

But he had just made a point of telling Gardiner and the programme’s viewers that:

for that to happen two thirds of MPs have to vote for it to happen.

Barry Gardiner’s entirely correct intervention shut down the misleading line and put the truth on view.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

The Establishment media line that a change of government is beyond realistic reach is starting to crack. Marr was caught this morning, but BBC News also started to address the truth of the matter at last this morning. More on that shortly.

The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.

If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.


  1. Barry is probably one of the most consistently impressive Labour MP’s we have. He is by far the most intellectually and politically astute politician we have in the party. Whilst some may say Keir Starmer is in the same bracket he doesn’t come over in interview las very well, he’s what I would term a “background” person. Marr’s faux outrage regarding homeless people at Christmas was pathetic. People aren’t homeless just for the month of December. Perhaps slowly but surely it’s dawning on the BBC that a Labour Government is now going to happen and they’re trying furiously to back peddling to save their neoliberal club or more likely, tge neoliberal gravy train that has hit the buffers!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: