I am currently undertaking a short period of delayed compassionate leave following the death of my beloved husband, Ray, earlier this year, so I was very disappointed not to be in the Chamber for the vote this week as I have worked hard to hold the Government to account on the issue of the NHS and social care.
My vote would have been ‘paired’ with another MP from the opposite side, so the vote would have cancelled out.
Pairing is an arrangement undertaken by the Whips between two MPs of opposing parties who are unable to vote in a particular division. This enables an MP to be absent without affecting the result of the vote, as they effectively cancel each other out.
There are many reasons why an MP cannot be in the Chamber to vote, from compassionate leave to illness etc., and this is why pairing is used