Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott has called on embattled Labour MP Keith Vaz to step down over a cocaine and escorts scandal.
The Commons Standards Committee on Monday recommended that the Leicester East MP should face a six-month suspension after offering to buy cocaine for sex workers in 2016 in a Sunday Mirror sting operation.
The committee found his excuse – that he had hired the escorts for interior decorating advice – was “not believable and, indeed, ludicrous”.
Parliament will today vote on whether to impose the punishment on the former Europe minister.
Abbott told the BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme this morning that Vaz should not stand at the 12 December general election.
She said: “I think he should consider his position. I think he himself should agree not to be a candidate.
“It has been a very sad issue, not just for him but for his family and his children.”
Vaz has maintained the support of his Leicester East constituency, however Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC) have not yet made a judgement on his ability to stand in an election.
The 62-year-old has not said whether he plans to stand in Leicester East for a seventh consecutive time.
There are concerns from the standards committee that the 62-year-old could serve just three days of a potential suspension if he is re-elected as a Labour MP in the election.
The committee wrote to House of Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg to voice concerns that there was no method to ensure Vaz’s suspension continues into a new session of parliament, according to The Times.
The letter, written by chairman Kate Green, said the committee was “strongly of the view” that Vaz should serve a full six-month suspension, but that this could be hampered by the convention that one parliament cannot bind its successor.