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MP expresses delight as FoI bill fails to find a sponsor

June 14, 2007 4:40 PM

Tim speaking in ParliamentLocal MP Tim Farron has expressed his delight at the news that the bill to exempt MPs from Freedom of Information legislation has failed to find a sponsor in the House of Lords. Although it would still be technically possible to bring the bill back, it is now most unlikely to be passed.

The bill was proposed by neighbouring Tory MP David Maclean, and would have meant that items like MPs expenses and details of lobby groups that MPs worked on behalf of could have been kept secret.

Speaking this morning, Tim Farron, who had fought the bill on the floor of the House of Commons, said: "As elected representatives, we need to be open to public scrutiny. If this bill had been passed it would have been a very bad day for democracy indeed.

"During the debate on the bill some MPs raised issues about confidential casework being made public (though Ministers and the Speaker had received few, if any, complaints). The bill in front of us was complete overkill, but we do now need to look at the implementation of Data Protection legislation to make sure that constituents' private data is protected properly."