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Don’t turn the Commons into a crèche

Labour MP Stella Creasy in Parliament with her three-month-old son

If Stella Creasy has her way, the Speaker of the House of Commons will soon have to deal with “real toddlers”, not just childish MPs, says Clare Foges in the Daily Mail. The Labour MP for Walthamstow is campaigning to allow babies into the chambers of Parliament after being rebuked for bringing her three-month-old son into a debate. Terrified of appearing “like sexist dinosaurs”, male MPs including the Deputy Prime Minister, Dominic Raab, are “falling over themselves to oblige”. But they’re making a mistake: “Babies are the enemies of clear thought.” They screech, cry and let off foul-smelling odours. Their presence will make it impossible for MPs to do their jobs properly.

Don’t get me wrong – I love babies. I’ve had three of them in the past three years. But I struggle even to “make scrambled eggs while wrangling my brood” – so how is an MP meant to participate in debates on “the finer points of fiscal policy”? As distractions go, babies are surely up there with MPs’ second jobs. And why should other MPs be made to feel “uncomfortable, irritated or distracted” by their colleagues’ children? The House of Commons is the heart of our democracy – it “should feel like a sacred place, not a crèche”.