Banning Trump visit to UK causes 3-hour debate in parliament

via Reuters

via Reuters

British MPs have debated a petition to ban US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump from Britain over remarks on Muslims, but while describing his comments as “crazy” and “offensive”, most said the ban would go against free speech.

They said Trump should be allowed into Britain where his views could be challenged, a ban would give him more publicity, or it was not for Britain to get involved in US affairs.

Trump caused outrage in December with his comments that Muslims should be banned from entering the US.

He spoke after 14 people died in a shooting spree in California by two Muslims whom the FBI said had been radicalised.

His comments prompted more than half a million Britons to sign a petition calling for him to be barred from entering the country, where he has business interests.

MPs from all sides criticised Trump’s comments during the three-hour debate.

While it was not followed by a vote, many more MPs spoke against a ban than for it.

“I want to see Donald Trump come to this country … I want him to get a sense of the fury and the frustration with his xenophobic remarks,” said Gavin Robinson, an MP from Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party.

Only interior minister Theresa May can issue an order banning entry into Britain, and Prime Minister David Cameron has said that while Trump’s comments were “divisive, unhelpful and wrong”, he does not back the idea of barring him.

Immigration Minister James Brokenshire said the government did not comment on who it was considering for exclusion but said “a frank and open exchange of views” was the most effective way to influence Trump.

The fact that there are even people in parliament in a western democracy who think banning someone for their views is something worth debating is beyond me. The man’s not done anything illegal, he’s no threat to anyone, and all he brings are his political views and proposed solutions.

I fully understand that some brainless idiots want to ban him – it’s their answer for everything. ?But a three-hour debate?

A free exchange of ideas where nobody is scared of anyone speaking their mind is why Trump needs to be allowed to go anywhere he likes.


– Reuters via 3 News