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MP rebels again on Chief Coroner post

2nd November 2011
MP rebels again on Chief Coroner post

Gordon Henderson has rebelled against the Government again, this time against the decision to scrap the post of Chief Coroner.

Mr Henderson was one of only three Conservative MPs to defy the party whip and vote for an amendment to the Public Bodies Bill that would have seen the Chief Coroner removed from the list of public bodies and quangoes the Government plans to scrap.

Mr Henderson’s stand was welcomed by the Royal British Legion, whose spokesman, Kevin Shinkwin, said:

‘We are really grateful that Mr Henderson voted on Tuesday for Andrew Percy's amendment to take the Chief Coroner out of the Public Bodies Bill and for his consistent support.

‘Thanks to the principled stand that he, Andrew and others took, we are optimistic that peers will feel encouraged to repeat their emphatic vote to remove the Chief Coroner from the Bill when they consider Commons amendments.

‘Parliament promised, when it passed the Coroners and Justice Act with cross-party support less than two years ago, to give bereaved families, and especially bereaved Armed Forces families, the support they deserve - a Chief Coroner. We hope sincerely that the Government will use this poignant time to pause and reflect and reach the right decision.

‘We're sure Mr Henderson’s much-appreciated vote will help focus Ministers' minds on this crucial issue, which says so much about the Government's priorities and about us as a nation.’

Mr Henderson explained:

‘I am sorry that I was forced to rebel against the Government twice in one week. However, I made a commitment to my constituents before the last election that I would always put their interests before party politics. I will continue to pursue that policy, so no doubt will fall out with my whips again in the future!’

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