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The legislation – set to hit tech companies failing to remove illegal and harmful content with huge fines – was promised as long ago as 2019, but there is still no date for it to be launched.
During a special Commons session dedicated to the slain Southend West MP on Monday, fellow Tory Mark Francois said the Bill must now be put “on to the statute book” – and proposed that it be called “David’s law”.
Elsewhere, Mr Johnson has refused to cut ties with China, saying Britain will not “pitchfork away” investment from the east Asian nation despite ongoing feuds with Beijing over human rights abuses and Hong Kong.
Ahead of the Global Investment Summit in London, the PM said in an interview with Bloomberg that China would continue to play a “gigantic part” in Britain’s economy – but insisted the government would not be “naive”.
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MPs jump to Johnson’s defence amid lockdown breach accusations
Downing Street and Tory MPs are working hard to bat away allegations Boris and Carrie Johnson broke Covid lockdown rules in December to spend time with a friend at Christmas.
It follows reports the political campaigner and Home Office adviser Nimco Ali stayed in No 11 over the festive break.
While insisting no rules were broken in the process, No 10 appeared to admit Ms Ali, who is godmother to the Johnsons’ son, Wilfred, was at Downing Street over the Christmas period as part of their “childcare support bubble”.
Asked about the unfolding situation on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, international trade secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said she had “no doubt” the PM had stayed within the realms of his own lockdown rules.
She also said the pair “had every right” to enlist a friend “to help with childcare”, citing Mr Johnson’s busy schedule.
Challenged over whether she was implying Mrs Johnson would have been working at the same time her husband might have been, Ms Trevelyan stressed she “did not have all the details” but that Ms Ali was a “dedicated godmother” and would have done what she could to help out.
Trade secretary shares experience of ‘online trolling’
More stories of MPs being threatened with violence are emerging this morning.
Anne-Marie Trevelyan, the international trade secretary, has said she once received threats to burn down her house with her children inside.
It comes amid conversations around MPs’ safety following the murder of Sir David Amess.
Ms Trevelyan told LBC radio:
“The online trolling that I’ve had, I’ve had a certain amount, I’ve had to have someone arrested who was threatening to burn down my house when my children were in it.
“These things are ghastly and entirely wrong, and our police forces work incredibly hard to support us as parliamentarians and to protect our families, but we are going to keep looking at that.”
House of Commons schedule for Tuesday
Here’s a quick look at what’s happening in the Commons today:
11.30am Health and social care questions
12.30pm Urgent questions and statements
A 10-minute rule motion on Bereavement Leave and Pay (stillborn and miscarried babies)
A motion under the Coronavirus Act 2020 relating to the renewal of temporary provisions
Opposition Day Debate on business rates
A short debate on regulation of investments in the fossil fuel industry
For a full Parliamentary schedule, including sessions in Westminster Hall and the House of Lords, head here.
Normal Commons business to resume after day of tributes to David Amess
Normal business will resume in the House of Commons on Tuesday, following a day of poignant tributes to Sir David Amess.
The Tory MP for Southend West was fatally stabbed on Friday during a constituency surgery in Leigh-on-Sea in Essex.
During an emotional day in Westminster on Monday, it was announced that Southend will be granted city status in recognition of Sir David’s decades-long campaign for the seaside town to be given the honour.
But as the Commons returns to a regular schedule, it is likely that the security of MPs in the wake of Sir David’s death will still be on the minds of many.
Home secretary Priti Patel told the Commons yesterday a review of policing for politicians is “concluding literally in the next few days”.
Britain will not ‘pitchfork away’ investment from China – Johnson
Britain will not “pitchfork away” investment from China despite ongoing differences with Beijing over human rights and Hong Kong, Boris Johnson has said.
Ahead of the Global Investment Summit in London, the PM said China would continue to play a “gigantic part” in UK economic life for years to come, writes Gavin Cordon.
At the same time, he insisted the Government would not be “naive” about allowing China access to the UK’s critical national infrastructure (CNI) such as nuclear power or the 5G communications network.
‘China is a great civilisation’ says PM
PM urged to end delayed social media abuse crackdown
MPs are urging Boris Johnson to bring forward the long delayed Online Harms Bill in a bid to crackdown on social media abuse after the killing of David Amess. The law was promised as long ago as 2019 but there is still no date for it to be launched.
During tributes to the slain Southend West MP, fellow Conservative Mark Francois said the legislation must now be put “on to the statute book” – and proposed that it be called “David’s law”.
Earlier, Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle made the same criticism – as he revealed a car bomb threat – saying: “If it was up to me and I was in charge of legislation, I would have done something.”
There are concerns Nadine Dorries’ appointment as culture secretary in the recent Cabinet reshuffle will mean the Bill is further delayed, after the former SoS Olivier Dowden had pledged it would be introduced by the end of December, reports our deputy political editor Rob Merrick.
Online Harms Bill was promised as long ago as 2019 – but there is still no date for it to be launched
Good morning, and welcome to The Independent’s rolling political coverage. Stay tuned as we continue to bring you the latest developments from the murder of Tory MP Sir David Amess.