Page last updated at 15:25 GMT, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 16:25 UK

Speaker resigns to 'maintain unity'

Michael Martin has told MPs he will resign as Speaker of the House of Commons on 21 June, following the row over MPs' expenses.

In a terse statement lasting only 35 seconds, he said that his decision was so that "unity can be maintained". Mr Martin will also stand down as an MP, prompting a by-election in his Glasgow North East seat.

He is the first Speaker in more than 300 years to be forced out of his job.

Nick Robinson reports.


Story Tools


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific