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The Recall of MPs Bill 2014-15 received Royal Assent on 26 March 2015.

The Bill was introduced on 11 September 2014 and had its second reading on 21 October 2014. The committee stage of the Bill took place on the floor of the House of Commons over two days; the first committee stage debate was on 27 October 2014 and the second was on 3 November 2014. Zac Goldsmith tabled a number of amendments that would have replaced the Government’s system of recall, triggered by a MP’s conduct, with a system that allowed voters to initiate a recall process. The amendment was pressed and was defeated on a division.

The only Government amendments made to the Bill were amendments to clarify the provisions of Clause 19 relating to the role of the Speaker in the recall process. These amendments were agreed on the second day of committee.

At report stage on 24 November 2014 three Opposition amendments were agreed, these were

• To reduce the period of suspension from the House from 21 to 10 sitting days to trigger a recall;

• To make provision for a further recall condition of a Member being convicted of an offence under Section 10 of the Parliamentary Standards Act 2009;

• To pave the way to allow a recall petition to be triggered by an offence committed before the day Clause 1 comes into force.

The Bill was read a third time on 24 November 2014.

During consideration of the Bill by the House of Lords the following amendments were agreed:

• At Committee stage a number of technical and consequential Government amendments which would enable the Bill to make provisions as intended by the House of Commons when it inserted a third trigger for recall into the Bill:

• Government amendments were also agreed at Committee stage which gave effect to the intention of the House of Commons that the Bill should be amended so that a recall petition would be triggered by an offence committed before the day Clause 1 came into force.

• At Report stage a Government amendment which increased the number of signing places that a petition officer could designate within the constituency from a maximum of 4 to a maximum of 10 was agreed.

• Also at Report stage a Government amendment to remove the power for the Act to be amended through regulations relating to the recall petition process was agreed.

• At third reading a Government amendment which reduced the recall petition signing period from 8 to 6 weeks was agreed.

The House of Lords returned the Bill to the House of Commons with amendments and these were considered and agreed to on the floor of the House on 24 March 2015.

This Note provides a brief summary of the debates on the Bill in the both Houses. For background to the Bill and details of the provisions, as introduced, see Library Research Paper 14/53, Recall of MPs Bill 2014-15.

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