SNP MP criticised for crossing fingers during oath of allegiance to the Queen
An SNP MP has been branded “disrespectful” for crossing his fingers while pledging his allegiance to the Queen.
MPs are required by law to make an oath or affirmation of allegiance to the Crown and are not allowed to speak in debates, vote or receive their salary until they do so.
Steven Bonnar, who represents the Coatbridge Chryston & Bellshill constituency, visibly crossed his fingers when he held up his right hand when affirming as MPs returned to Parliament after the General Election.
However, in a Twitter post on Mr Bonnar's account, a screen grab of the moment cropped out his full hand.
That's us all official now. I have been sworn in as the MP for Coatbridge Chryston and Bellshill. I look forward to serving all constituents to the best of my ability for the time Scotland remains within the UK. pic.twitter.com/PcgQwIvp2Q
— Steven Bonnar MP (@StevenBonnarSNP) December 18, 2019
Mr Bonnar’s actions - and subsequent Twitter post not showing his fingers - were criticised for showing a lack of respect to the Queen.
Susan Hall, the leader of the Conservatives on the Greater London Authority, tweeted: “How dare he insult our wonderful Queen how very disrespectful.”
Journalist Tom Harwood added: “If you loathe this country and our Queen, then why not be honest about it?
“I'd have more respect for the guy if he didn't do one thing when he thinks no one's looking, then try to present an alternate reality to his social media followers. Seems duplicitous.”
If you loathe this country and our Queen, then why not be honest about it?
I'd have more respect for the guy if he didn't do one thing when he thinks no one's looking, then try to present an alternate reality to his social media followers. Seems duplicitous.
— Tom Harwood (@tomhfh) December 18, 2019
Another SNP MP, Mhairi Black, said her allegiance is "first and foremost" to her Paisley and Renfrewshire South constituents and she was making the pledge "for the purpose of the job".
The SNP's Gavin Newlands earlier said he was affirming in order to "serve my constituents”, while Anne McLaughlin, also from the SNP, said her "primary allegiance is to the people of Glasgow North East and the people of Scotland".
SDLP MP Claire Hanna wrote to Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle to raise concerns about the pledge required by politicians before they can take their seats in the House of Commons.
WATCH: SNP MP @MhairiBlack affirms allegiance to the Queen "for the purpose of the job".
"I didn't get chucked out!", she adds. pic.twitter.com/L4Ek903Tz0
— Philip Sime (@PhilipSime) December 18, 2019
Ms Hanna, the new MP for Belfast South said in the letter: "I submit this letter to you to register a respectful protest against the requirement that I make a statement of allegiance to the Crown as a precondition for taking my seat.
"I chose an affirmation rather than an oath, but the words do not reflect my outlook.”
Yahoo News UK has contacted the SNP for comment.