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‘Lots of people think we are in it completely up to our necks’: MP warns of consequences of Westminster scandals

18 Apr 2022 3 minute read
Chris Bryant in the House of Commons

A Welsh Labour MP has said he can’t remember a parliament that had so many criminal issues and warned that the public will have no faith in politicians as a result.

Chris Bryant MP for Rhondda and the chairman of the Commons standards committee, said that politicians have not behaved this poorly since the 2009 expenses scandal and claimed that the public think politicians are “in it up to our necks”.

Speaking to the Telegraph this weekend Mr Bryant warned that damage to public trust in politicians could see British politics become more polarised and could lead the UK to extreme choices between the far right and far left of the political spectrum.

Mr Bryant also speculated whether the recent spate of poor behaviour from MPs could be a result of working-from-home policies and the large number of new members resulting from the 2019 election.

Mr Bryant was commenting in the wake of weeks of scandal in Westminster which saw the Prime Minister and the Chancellor receiving what’s thought to be the first of a number of fines resulting from the ‘partygate’, and the triggering of a by election following a sexual assault conviction and subsequent resignation of Conservative MP Imran Ahmen Khan.

Mr Kahn’s resignation followed the departure of Mike Hill, a Labour MP who was found to have breached Parliament’s sexual misconduct policy, and allegations of sexual assault and drug-taking against David Warburton, a Conservative MP who is being investigated by the Tory whips’ office, claims which he denies.

Code of conduct

Boris Johnson is facing fresh accusations of organising a party in Downing Street which could lead to a fine of £10,000 and Sir Lindsay Hoyle, the Commons Speaker, is expected to allow MPs a vote to trigger a privileges committee investigation into whether Mr Johnson misled the Commons over the extent of lockdown parties in Downing Street and across Whitehall.

According to the Institute for Public Policy Research, trust in the honesty of politicians is at an all-time low. A poll published last week found that 75% of the public believed that Boris Johnson lied about breaking the law and the institute warns that the poll identifies a “collapse in public satisfaction with politicians and democracy”.

The Commons standards committee is currently drawing up a new code of conduct for MPs following concerns that the previous rules were out of date, and one of the issues they will tackle will be second jobs, following the lobbying scandal which led to the resignation of Owen Patterson.

“I just can’t remember a parliament that had so many criminal issues, let alone anything else,” the Labour MP told The Telegraph.

“I think it’s in danger of being worse than the expenses scandal. We’ve got to seize hold of the fact that lots of people think we are in it completely up to our necks.

“I don’t know whether Covid has made things worse,” he said. “There’s very little corporate memory around in Parliament because we’ve had such a big turnover of MPs.

“Every generation of MPs is a set of guardians for the reputation of Parliament, and all those shenanigans last year did a lot of damage to trust in Parliament.

“The danger is that you end up in a French situation where people are choosing between hard Left and Right because the people who offer the populist stances become the most palatable,” he said.


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The Original Mark
The Original Mark
5 months ago

Seriously? Haven’t behaved this badly since 2009?

What planet is this joker living on?

Malcolm rj
Malcolm rj
5 months ago

How many people in the Rhonda know that this man you vote for has 4 houses in London

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
5 months ago
Reply to  Malcolm rj

Indeed as highlighted in my post. Hypocrite Chris Bryant flipped his house more times than a pancake.

Last edited 5 months ago by Y Cymro
I.Humphrys
I.Humphrys
5 months ago

Proper small c conservative party badly needed in Cymru. No future without this, at least not one where people feel content to a certain degree.

Last edited 5 months ago by I.Humphrys
Welsh_Siôn
Welsh_Siôn
5 months ago
Reply to  I.Humphrys

Proper small c conservative party badly needed in Cymru.
______

To paraphrase St Augustine:

“But not just yet”.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
5 months ago
Reply to  I.Humphrys

Sorry to disagree, but any amount of Conservatism in Wales is bad.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
5 months ago

Said the MP for Rhondda Chris Bryant, a man who in his time abstained on numerous Welsh devolution bills at Westminster that could have devolved our Criminal Justice System to Wales but deemed it more important to vote for Manchester to have policing devolved, who himself flipped his publically funded house multiple times making hundreds of thousands in the process. Yeah, some are unjustly tarred with the same brush where others deserve it like you Chris.

Arwyn
Arwyn
5 months ago

Not this Chris Bryant surely? https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/chris-bryant-named-mps-expenses-2021925 https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/politics/650000-profit-chris-bryant-mp-16116555 The Chris Bryant who “hates the idea that all MP’s have their snouts in the trough”? https://nation.cymru/news/labour-mp-chris-bryant-hates-idea-that-all-mps-have-their-snouts-in-the-trough/ I’ll be honest though. His taking advantage of his circumstances for his own personal gain I personally find marginally less offensive than his eulogising of the constitutional arrangements of a UK that has done so much to put his constituents, amongst them members of my own family, into poverty and low wages. Anyone who argues against Welsh democratic self-determination and the continuation of this Tory UK is defending the indefensible IMHO. A poor choice of position… Read more »

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

Call it like it is…the Britannia Unhinged mob is just that, a suited mobster conspiracy to takeover the country sufficiently long enough to steal all they can get their hands on and corrupt those who remain aboard under the skull and crossbones. The Omerta of the Guilty…

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

How’s this for a radical idea…we have a William Jones Llangadfan day. The 20th of August is the day of his passing…we can all pile into the Cann Office and give him a good send off…

Cwm Rhondda
Cwm Rhondda
5 months ago

Smoke and mirrors – Bryant the master politician, covering his own tracks.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago
Reply to  Cwm Rhondda

He did allude to that in committee a while back…

Erisian
Erisian
5 months ago

While all that he says is true, and fair comment …
Does Mr Bryant think we have no memory of own his crimes and misdemeanors?
Does he think the Internet has forgotten him?
Does he not know that expression about pots and kettles, or remember the parable of the woman taken in adultery?

Grayham Jones
5 months ago

Kick him out of wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 he has been a disgrace to the people of the Rhondda he’s got 4 properties in London kick all English party’s out of wales vote Plaid Cymru it’s time for a new wales o

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