Priti Patel today insisted MPs must keep meeting voters as she hinted that police would guard weekly surgeries, and refused to rule out ending anonymity on social media to curb threats.
The Home Secretary said it would be unacceptable for the murder of Tory veteran David Amess to sever the link between an elected representative and their democratic function, responsibility and commitment to the people who elected them.
She confirmed that security had already been ramped up since the fatal attack with politicians reminded to share their locations with police, and the government are looking at ensuring that every MP gets officers on guard at their surgeries, a move supported by Speaker Lindsay Hoyle.
Priti Patel also said the government were also looking at whether there needed to be more action to prevent threats and abuse from being posted anonymously online.
However, Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell, a close friend of Sir David Amess, lashed out at the police for disregarding threats.
He told the Times Radio that he’s had four or five incidents where he’d had to report things to the police and that quite often they literally didn’t do anything, or the onus was on him to give continual statements which lead to nowhere.
Southend West MP David Amess was meeting constituents at a church in Leigh on Sea, Essex when he was stabbed to death on Friday afternoon.
Police continue to question a 25-year-old British man of Somalian origin last night who have been granted permission to detain him until Friday.
Speaking to Sky New’s Trevor Phillips On Sunday programme this morning, Priti Patel said numerous MPs would be reflecting upon their constituency interactions and safety this weekend, but she insisted MPs needed to continue to do their democratic duty by engaging with voters.
She said that she’s been a member of parliament for just over ten years and that they were part of that fabric, the DNA of society, their democracy, freedom and the opportunity for people to mesh with them, but that what she would say is that a lot has changed.
Priti Patel said the murder of Jo Cox was an intensive period for MPs when it came to thinking about their safety, adding that they have all changed their ways of working because of growing concerns and threats in society.
The police would be better employed by getting out on the streets and protecting all of us. Sadly we normal people don’t count because we’re just peasants, and only the elite look after the elite.
But perhaps this should have happened after Jo Cox was murdered? Maybe it should have happened years ago because as much as the political class is disliked by numerous sectors of the public, they’re still human beings, fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers and a major part of the UK democracy. This is a terrible tragedy that’s occurred here and we should certainly have learned the lessons from Jo Cox’s murder.
Of course, this is going to be costly and probably won’t even dent the root of the problem and perhaps MPs should hold their surgeries over the internet.
It’s terrible what’s happened to David Amess, but security for all MPs?
Two women a week are killed by their partners, where is their protection? Where is the protection for all people? And MPs and no more important than the public, and why should the taxpayer pay for their security when Joe Public are not being protected?