MPs will not be able to vote against their own suspension as they agreed to tighten up standards after a lobbying scandal involving the former MP for North Shropshire.

The Commons also approved an appeals process against disciplinary decisions made by the Committee on Standards.

The reforms aimed at preventing MPs voting on their own suspension come after Owen Paterson voted against his own suspension while he was embroiled in a lobbying scandal.

The government of Boris Johnson attempted to overhaul the standards process to prevent him from being suspended from Parliament, but abandoned its plans when public sentiment turned against it.

The amendments on suspension votes was spearheaded by the Liberal Democrat chief whip, Wendy Chamberlain and she said it would bolster parliamentary convention.

She explained: "Simply put, conventions only last as long as people choose to adhere to them and when people don’t that reflects on all of us.

"At the moment, a member in that situation can vote in relation to their own censure.

"Some of us might not think that that would never actually happen after an independent investigation has found you not just responsible for breaking the code of conduct but also responsible for such an egregious breach that your privileges as a member of this place are to be curtailed as a result of that breach

"Surely we would like to think that there would be sober reflection and making amends as a result of that, but sadly we know that that isn’t always the case.

"It is less than a year since we saw the situation relating to the censure of the former member for North Shropshire and in those two votes that former member voted against his own suspension."


Standards Committee chairman, Chris Bryant outlined the recommended changes not yet accepted by the Government including a ban on 'the provision of paid parliamentary advice.'

Mr Bryant said: "I just think this is self-evident.

"I think everybody supports it and I would like to make that the rule, it isn’t yet the rule.

"We also think that members who have second jobs, especially if they are ongoing ones, should have a contract for that and it should say what you can do and what you can’t do, because sometimes people will put in a contract 'you will provide contacts with Government on our behalf.'

"Well you can’t do that, that is expressly paid lobbying."

Mr Paterson resigned as an MP after he was found to have breached rules on paid advocacy after lobbying ministers on behalf of health company, Randox.

Meanwhile, Daniel Greenberg has been confirmed as the new Parliamentary Standards Commissioner and will take over from Kathryn Stone in January.

Ms Stone has served in the position since 2018, her term coinciding with a number of high-profile sleaze scandals, including the one involving Mr Paterson.