Lindsay Hoyle, speaker of the house of commons, walks on the day of the State Opening of Parliament, at the Houses of Parliament, in London, Tuesday, November 7, 2023. Credit: AP Photo/Hannah McKay

Pressure is mounting on Sir Lindsay Hoyle, as 68 MPs have signed a motion expressing no confidence in the Speaker of the House of Commons.

Hoyle is facing calls to resign over his conduct during the Gaza ceasefire debate in Parliament on Wednesday. Home Secretary James Cleverly gave personal support to Hoyle despite the mounting pressure, which is just the latest event in his long political career.

The son of former Labour MP Lord Hoyle, Sir Lindsay first won an election at age 22, becoming the youngest-ever local councillor in Chorley, Lancashire. He went on to become Mayor of Chorley, and then MP for the area in 1997.

In 2010, Hoyle became Deputy Speaker under John Bercow. Once Bercow’s decade-long tenure as speaker ended in 2019, amid bullying allegations, Hoyle was elected to the position.

In Parliament, the Speaker’s role is to chair and moderate debates in the Commons, choose who speaks and decide what amendments are heard. They also have the ability to give a casting vote in the event of a tie.

Due to this senior position, the Speaker must remain impartial and is required to resign from their party once appointed.

Hoyle has come under fire for impartiality issues. His decision to allow voting amendments from both the Government and Labour to the SNP’s motion for a ceasefire in Gaza defied parliamentary convention. MPs said the decision would help Labour leader Sir Kier Starmer avoid rebellion in his party.

There is no formal mechanism for removing a Speaker, as previous holders of the office were only replaced upon resignation or death, but it would be difficult for Hoyle to carry on if a majority of MPs call for him to go.