From Iceland — MP's Facebook Post Ends Parliamentary Session

MP’s Facebook Post Ends Parliamentary Session

Published March 14, 2012

A post made on Facebook by a member of parliament allegedly broke parliamentary rules, resulting in a recess being declared.
The fracas began, RÚV reports, when Valgerður Bjarnadóttir, the chairperson of the Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs, brought up the fact that Progressive MP Vigdís Hauksdóttir quoted a committee guest on her Facebook page. The three guests were members of the Constitutional Committee and, quoted by Vigdís on Facebook, Vigdís added that putting the new constitution up for referendum is now “off the table”.
Valgerður believed that Vigdís had violated a parliamentary rule regarding confidentiality at committee meetings; a charge that Vigdís denied. She did, however, remove the post from her Facebook.
Leftist-Green MP Álfheiður Ingadóttir and Valgerður both criticised Vigdís for the post. Recess was called in parliament and, upon reconvening, Vigdís defended her Facebook post, adding that she felt she was “subjected to violence” for the criticism.
Committee meetings often invite guests, or have guests requesting to be invited, to offer their verbal input on a bill or proposal. While not every aspect of such meetings are confidential, directly quoting committee guests does break parliamentary rules.

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