European Parliament Vice-President defies rules to frustrate legitimate democratic protest by UKIP MEPs over TTIP vote delay
•UKIP Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall today lambasted Vice-President Gall-Pelcz, calling what happened last night under her watch "a disgrace and an outrage."
"Under Rule 191 the EFDD group requested a vote to suspend the sitting and that vote, under the rules, should have been taken immediately," Mr Nuttall told the Chamber this morning.
"Instead the Vice-President took it upon herself to suspend the sitting for 30 minutes so that you guys could come down and vote.
"This highlights one of the reasons why many people perceive this place to be a Mickey Mouse chamber. You either have a rule book, or you don't. You either stick by it, or you rip it up and then we make it up as we go along, just as happened last night.
"As a result we will be writing to President Schulz to clarify that the rule book is applied evenly across this House and that we are not discriminated against like we were last night simply for being Eurosceptics," Paul Nuttall concluded.
Yesterday evening in the European Parliament, Jonathan Arnott, UKIP MEP for the North East and EU budget spokesman, led a protest against the suppression of debate on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Arnott proposed a procedural motion to suspend the sitting "to allow Parliament the opportunity to reflect on the undemocratic actions by President Martin Schulz and other officials to suppress the vote and debate on this issue which is of concern to millions of people across the EU."
Arnott said: "I proposed suspending Parliamentary debate for the day to highlight this point. The officials on the podium responded with what looked like panic, ringing the division bell and breaking their own rules. The rules demand an immediate vote, but they delayed for over forty minutes to allow their supporters to flood the chamber."
Roger Helmer, UKIP MEP for East Midlands and energy spokesman, was in the chamber to support the protest. When it became clear the vice-president (Ildikó Gall-Pelcz) was acting in breach of the rules, Helmer broke procedure and went onto the podium to ask her if she realised she was in breach of the rules. "She replied yes. I then asked her if she was happy she was breaking the rules, and she said she was not. And yet she broke the rules anyway."
Morning, 10.06.2015: UKIP MEPs Arnott and Woolfe speak for TTIP
debate to proceed following suspension of vote
Afternoon, 10.06.2015: UKIP MEP Steven Woolfe asks for vote on
'disgraceful treatment' over TTIP