One day after being humiliated in the chamber by cross-party calls for his resignation, Michael Martin is gone.
In less than ten seconds he announced that was standing down and ending his controversial tenure as Speaker of the House of Commons.
“Since I came to this House 30 years ago, I have always felt that the House is at its best when it is united…
In order that unity can be maintained, I have decided that I will relinquish the office of Speaker on Sunday June 21.
This will allow the House to proceed to elect a new Speaker on Monday June 22…
That is all I have to say on this matter.”
As John Burns writes in The New York Times:
“It began modestly enough back in 2005, when an American freelance writer and journalism teacher living in London, Heather Brooke, entered a request under Britain’s newly promulgated freedom of information act for details of the expense claims of British members of Parliament. Ms. Brooke’s initiative to expose the politicians’ greed, now led by one of the country’s principal newspapers, The Daily Telegraph, has led to the biggest scandal to hit the House of Commons in decades. On Tuesday, the affair claimed its biggest victim yet when the speaker of the House of Commons, Michael Martin, became the first man to be ousted from that job in more than 300 years.”
He is gone, who will be next?