House speaker said he was within his right to evict Senator from House of Representatives meeting

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Updated: July 1, 2015

Speaker of the House, Michael Peyrifitte issued a release today explaining his removal of Senator Patrick Andrews from the National Assembly building last Friday. The release says while standing Order 87 of the House, provides for the Speaker to deal with the removal of strangers from the gallery during a House Meeting and Standing Order 44 provides for the Speaker to remove Members of the House during a House meeting, it does not address how to deal with a Senator who is in the gallery during a House Meeting. It goes on to say a Senator has to be in the gallery because he has no right to sit in the actual chamber where the 31 members plus the Speaker sit during a House Meeting.  He goes on to quote standing order 91 which states, (1) The Speaker shall have power to regulate the conduct of business in all matters not provided for in these Standing Orders.  (2) The decision in all cases for which these Standing Orders do not provide, shall lie within the discretion of the Speaker, and shall not be open to challenge.  (3) The Speaker shall be responsible for the management and general administration of the chamber. Peyrifitte says he has maintained a rule that when one side is speaking, the opposing gallery should remain silent.  He says the rule has been enforced from time to time by ordering the removal of persons from both sides of gallery. He said while it can be argued that Senator Andrews was not a stranger in the House in the strictest sense, he was in the very practical sense a stranger, indeed, because there are no special immunities nor privileges attached to a Senator that prevents him from being removed from a House Meeting and no special procedure to remove a Senator during a House Meeting, especially since he was not there under any special invitation from the Speaker.