|Member of Parliament
for Portsmouth North
6 May 2010
|Preceded by||Sarah McCarthy-Fry|
4 March 1973 |
Penelope Mary Mordaunt MP (born 4 March 1973) is a British Conservative Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Portsmouth North since winning the seat at the 2010 United Kingdom general election.
Mordaunt's family moved to Portsmouth in 1975, when she was aged two. She was educated at Oaklands RC Comprehensive School, Waterlooville, and then read philosophy at the University of Reading. Her interest in politics is attributed to her experiences of working in hospitals and orphanages in Romania after the 1989 revolution. After leaving university, she began a career in communications. She was communications director for Kensington and Chelsea Council, the Freight Transport Association and the National Lottery. She was also director of campaigns for Diabetes UK. She is an associate of Hanover Communications, a public affairs company.
Mordaunt has also worked with several high-profile politicians. Under Prime Minister John Major she was Head of Youth for the Conservative Party, whilst she had a two-year spell as Head of Broadcasting under party leader William Hague. In 2000, she was Head of Foreign Press for George W. Bush's presidential campaign, and she worked for the Bush campaign again in 2004. After the 2005 election she worked as a chief of staff for David Willets' leadership campaign.
In November 2003, Mordaunt was selected as Conservative candidate to contest Portsmouth North in the 2005 general election. She managed to attain a 5.5% swing towards the Conservatives but lost to Labour candidate Sarah McCarthy-Fry by 1,139 votes. It was claimed by the UK Independence Party that Mordaunt ascribed her defeat to UKIP candidate Michael Keith Smith who got 1,348 votes, a claim also made by Richard North of the Bruges Group.
Mordaunt was re-selected in January 2006 to contest Portsmouth North for the 2010 general election. She proposed standing for Mayor of London as a commuter mayor. In the 2010 general election, she won the seat with a 8.6% swing from Labour, giving her a 7,289 majority.
Media appearances and press criticism
Mordaunt participated in a Vanity Fair photo shoot during March 2010. The photoshoot, dubbed by the UK's Daily Mail as featuring 'Cameron's Cuties', featured Mordaunt posing in designer attire, alongside twelve other female, Conservative, prospective parliamentary candidates. Amanda Platell, writing in the newspaper, was fiercely critical of the stunt, arguing that many candidates such as Mordaunt "have been chosen for the wrong reason: to carry David Cameron's message that the Tories have changed. Not changed their principles, but their appearance." Platell also criticised the "gushing apple-pie naivete" of other female PPCs (Prospective Parliamentary Candidates).
Within the article, Mordaunt revealed that she had worked in the past as a magician's assistant. She also was quoted to say, "I joined the party in part because I lost a parent and had to help look after the house and my youngest brother. We weren't well off and that's why I believe in low taxation."
Mordaunt is a twin with her brother, James. She also has another brother, Edward. She currently lives in Port Solent (Portsmouth, Paulsgrove Ward). She is a patron of Victoria Cross Trust as well as an ambassador for Portsmouth Scouts. She is a relative of Philip Snowden, who was the first Labour Chancellor of the Exchequer.
- Penny Mordaunt profile
- "Howard's harem", Joe Murphy, Evening Standard, 18.03.04
- Ken and Chelsea council hires Tory broadcast chief, PR Week, 22 June 2001
- "Top Talent in the Tory Party", The Sun, 27 September 2006
- Profile: Life of the party – Penny Mordaunt, director of nations, regions and campaigns, Diabetes UK, PR Week, 5 May 2006
- PR Week 11 May 2010 "Many lobbyists win seats but some see majority decreased" by David Singleton
- The role of Women in McCain's presidential campaign, Woman's Hour, BBC Radio 4, 1 September 2008
- "Bush's black spin doctor backs Hague", Benedict Brogan, Daily Telegraph, 14 June 2001
- "Tara's top Tories", Tara Hamilton-Miller, New Statesman, 3 January 2008
- Tory Leadership Watch: August, BBC, August 2005
- "Diary of the week: Penny Mordaunt". totalpolitics.com. 22 October 2010. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- Portsmouth North Result
- UKIP candidate wins £10,000 for internet libel
- Election analysis: The effect of UKIP/Veritas, Richard North, Bruges Group
- "How will women vote?", Josie Appleton, Spiked, 20 April 2005
- "Tories face call for positive discrimination", Marie Woolf, The Independent, 15 January 2005
- Penny Mordaunt thinks it's time for a Commuter Mayor, ConservativeHome
- "House of Commons Public Bill Committee on the Defence Reform Bill 2013-14". Parliament.uk. Retrieved 17 September 2013.
- Tredinnick, David (29 June 2010). "Early Day Motion No. 342 British Medical Association Motions on Homeopathy".
- Platell, Amanda (8 April 2010). "Have Cameron's Cuties really got what it takes to transform politics?". Daily Mail (London).
- Official website
- Penny Mordaunt at the Conservative Party
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Electoral history and profile at The Guardian
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live