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Monday, November 29, 2021

Tory MP: Why I swore at Owen Paterson over sleaze row

“It is,” he said.

“And it’s been a mixture of quite a lot of anger and codeine. I clearly have a broken ankle at the moment, it’s not the best mix.

“But I do think it went to show the, I guess, the quantum of anger in the party and that’s still high now.

“But the fact that after all that kind of marching up the top of the hill, not once was there gratitude from Owen, not once was there, kind of, apologies or repentance.

“The fact he went out to the press and said: ‘I will do exactly the same again.’ I think I’m not the only one who would have wanted to use language of that nature to him.”

Ongoing row over sleaze in politics

Mr Paterson resigned as an MP following a saga where he was initially found to have breached lobbying rules, and it was recommended he be suspended from the Commons for 30 sitting days.

However, a Government-backed amendment – which Tory MPs were whipped to support – passed, which would have delayed the suspension and ordered a review into his case and the wider standards system.

The Government performed a U-turn after a widespread outcry, and Mr Paterson resigned.

The row has ignited a fresh focus on standards and sleaze in politics, which Mr Wakeford said those with smaller majorities such as his felt more keenly.

Mr Wakeford, whose majority is just 402, told Times Radio: “I’m not going to lie and say that I don’t focus on, probably a bit more than some would, as to what happens on a daily basis.

“I’m acutely aware by just looking at my inbox.

“I do take a different view to colleagues on certain issues, or I am more prone to being slightly rebellious as opposed to some of my colleagues because I need to reflect the view of my constituents and hopefully do what I need to, to make sure I’m returned whenever that election is.”

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