Omicron rapid spread prompts Liberals to limit number of MPs in Commons

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Published December 14, 2021 at 6:35 pm

OTTAWA — The federal government is vastly reducing the number of Liberal MPs present in the House of Commons due to the lightning spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

In addition, government House leader Mark Holland says all regional and national Liberal caucus meetings Wednesday will be entirely virtual.

He says he’s informed his opposition counterparts about the governing party’s decision to limit its numbers in the House but it will be up to other parties to decide whether to follow suit.

Holland says the Liberals are following the advice of public health officials, who are urging Canadians to avoid mass gatherings as Omicron spreads like wildfire.

Since the new session of Parliament opened last month, the majority of the country’s 338 MPs have been showing up for in-person proceedings in the House, where it is difficult to keep two metres apart.

However, the Liberals and New Democrats joined forces to approve a continuation of hybrid sittings, which gives MPs the option of participating virtually in proceedings.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 14, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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