Politics

George Galloway sworn in as MP and vows to ‘make Rochdale great again’

George Galloway has been sworn in as an MP, following his successful election last week.

He will represent Rochdale following a by-election, triggered by the death of Labour’s Sir Tony Lloyd.

Mr Galloway romped to victory with a majority, with independent runner David Tully finishing in second place, the Conservatives in third and Labour in fourth.

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Labour withdrew support from their candidate following allegations of antisemitism.

Mr Galloway was introduced to the Commons by the Conservative MP Sir Peter Bottomley, and Alba MP Neale Hanvey.

Pic: Reuters
Image:
George Galloway. Pic: Reuters

There was silence in the chamber as he arrived and completed the formalities – including shaking the Speaker’s hand. Normally there is cheering from allies of the new MP.

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Mr Galloway arrived in Westminster on Monday morning – telling waiting broadcasters that he “always loved the building – the people in it not so much”.

Speaking to broadcasters later in the day, Mr Galloway said he will attempt to speak in Prime Minister’s Questions this Wednesday, and if not selected then he said he will also look to speak in the budget debate afterwards.

Mr Galloway claims he is “unlikely to be chosen” for either.

When it comes to his constituency, Mr Galloway says he wants to “try to make Rochdale great again”.

Asked by Sky News if people should be “horrified” by Mr Galloway’s election, as suggested by the prime minister, the new MP said: “The people of Rochdale voted for me – that’s the first and obvious point to make.

“And it’s not for the prime minister, Rishi Sunak, to pick the MP in Rochdale.”

He added that it’s “frankly horrifying” the government is “so bereft of public support that they cower, frightened of calling the general election that this country badly needs”.

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