1. ITV Report

Lib Dems to abstain on Jeremy Hunt motion

The Liberal Democrat leadership has asked its party to abstain in tomorrow's debate being held by Labour on referring the Culture Secretary to the independent adviser on ministerial interests over his behaviour over the BSkyB takeover.

Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Credit: Press Association

The Commons motion calls for Sir Alex to investigate whether Tory Mr Hunt misled Parliament and failed to take responsibility for his special adviser Adam Smith, who resigned after admitting his contacts with News Corporation had been too close.

The Lib Dem decision was said to have received "unanimous support" at a meeting of the parliamentary party.

Political Reporter Lucy Manning reports:

A Liberal Democrat source said the decision not to refer Jeremy Hunt for investigation was taken by David Cameron and was not endorsed by his coalition partners.

At a meeting of Lib Dem MPs Mr Clegg explained the position and there was "complete unanimity", the source said.

"The decision not to refer it to Sir Alex Allan was the Prime Minister's decision, and we respect that. The opposition's motion, whatever happens, is not going to change that.

"However, it is not a decision that is endorsed by the Liberal Democrats, therefore we don't think we need to endorse it, therefore we won't support it on the floor of the House."

Shadow Culture Secretary Harriet Harman. Credit: PA Wire

Speaking ahead of the debate Harriet Harman said: "This is an important opportunity for the House of Commons to make clear the importance it places on Secretaries of State being transparent and truthful to Parliament.

"I think members from all sides of the House will want to be sure that this issue is not simply swept under the carpet.

"Misleading Parliament is not just some outdated constitutional issue – it matters."

The Lib Dem MP Andrew George has told ITV News "a number of unanswered questions" remain over Jeremy Hunt's involvement over the BSkyB bid, despite his party's decision to abstain from voting in tomorrow's opposition debate over whether an inquiry should be launched into the Culture Secretary: