Parliament braced for drama over Green arrest

Parliament is braced for MP protests over the arrest of Damian Green overshadowing the Queen’s Speech.

Officially, the only events concerning the controversy today is a statement by Speaker Michael Martin.

But the Westminster village is awash with rumours of Conservative protests on the floor of the Commons at some point today.

Mr Martin had to authorise the police to enter parliament when they searched Mr Green’s office last week.

Yesterday he held a meeting with Harriet Harman, leader of the House, Jack Straw, justice secretary and various civil servants.

His statement describing those events should be followed by the beginning of the debate on the Queen’s Speech, but various MPs are expected to raise points of order on the affair, at the very minimum.

The arrest of the Tory immigration minister has provoked a constitutional crisis at the heart of government and in the upper echelons of the Metropolitan police.

The Conservatives have compared the arrest to a Mugabe-style police state, and are working closely with the Liberal Democrats to discover what government figures knew about the arrest before it happened.

Gordon Brown and Jacqui Smith, home secretary, have categorically denied knowing anything, but refused to apologise for the arrest.

Yesterday, the prime minister said: “MPs have to be allowed to get on with their job but no MP is above the law.

“I’m concentrating on the work in hand.” will be covering events live from 11:00 GMT.