Another of the phoney 'nationalists' to make the journey down to Westminster this week was Drew Hendry, the member for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey (yes, that is one constituency). During a debate on the Internal Market Bill he leapt from his seat and began shouting in front of deputy speaker, Rosie Winterton. After she threatened to have him expelled from the chamber he decided to grab the ceremonial mace and make off with it. As per usual when MPs grab the mace they don't get very far. Watch below.
Clearly the SNP - like many of their bitter Remain colleagues in Parliament - are upset about the Internal Market Bill and any other such post-Brexit legislation that makes our transition to a free, independent nation as smooth as possible. Hendry was duly suspended from the chamber.
He is not the first Remainer MP to grab the mace during a Brexit debate. In December 2018 the hard left Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle marched forward and did the same as MPs debated Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement. "Name him" an MP could be heard shouting, which is the instruction from the Speaker to expel the offender.
Russell-Moyle grabs the mace
We have to go back almost ten years to the previous mace grabbing incident and this again involved a hard left Labour MP - none other than John McDonnell. In 2009 Labour were in government, but McDonnell was unhappy with the response from his colleague Transport Secretary Geoff Hoon to his question about the new runway for Heathrow. After Hoon said there would be no vote on the matter, the Quartermaster marched down from the back benches, grabbed the mace and dumped it on the front bench. He could be heard still shouting as the deputy speaker named him.
McDonnell grabs the mace
McDonnell was the first MP to grab the mace for over twenty years, the previous offender being yet another hard left Labour MP. Ron Brown (Edinburgh Leith) was protesting about the poll tax in 1988 and is the only member to date to actually damage the mace. After taking the mace he threw it to the floor and was later ordered to pay a £1,500 repair bill. He refused to apologise in the Commons, leading to a further suspension for 20 days. His refusal to back down also led to his suspension from the Labour Party for three months. Brown was expelled from Labour altogether three years later. Like Jeremy Corbyn, he was alleged to have held clandestine meetings with Soviet agents during the Cold War.
Only two other MPs grabbed the mace during the twentieth century - one Conservative and one Labour. Michael Heseltine held the mace above his head after the Labour government won a narrow victory on nationalising aircraft and ship building in 1976. He was particularly incensed when Labour MPs began singing the Red Flag.
John Beckett, a Labour MP who later turned to fascism, tried to leave the chamber with the mace in 1930 after one of his colleagues had been ordered from the Commons.