Chris Bryant is the chair of the Commons Committee on Standards. It is his job to uphold standards in the House and oversee investigations into other members for breaking rules. While confronting Boris at the Liaison Committee in 2021, Bryant slammed the then-PM for failing to correct the record:
“When a minister lies, they should correct the record, I presume you agree… It seems that you very rarely correct the record. Why is that?”
On the evening of Wednesday 19 October, Chris Bryant stood up in the Commons and told MPs the following as a matter of fact:
“As you know, Members are expected to be able to vote without fear or favour and the behaviour code, which is agreed by the whole House, says that there shall never be bullying or harassment of Members. I saw Members being physically manhandled into another Lobby and being bullied.”
On the BBC later that night he ramped up this rhetoric, saying what he saw was “clear bullying”.
Today’s report by the Speaker, summarising the testimony of those involved and with a good vantage point, rejects this claim entirely.
Lindsay Hoyle says, “While there was some physical contact between Members, there is no evidence from our investigation that this was any more than a gesture of comfort”.
Will the ever-virtuous Bryant follow his own advice and correct the record forthwith?