Tim Loughton

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Tim Loughton
MP
Tim Loughton.jpg
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families
In office
13 May 2010 – 4 September 2012
Prime Minister David Cameron
Succeeded by Edward Timpson[1]
Member of Parliament
for East Worthing and Shoreham
Incumbent
Assumed office
1 May 1997
Preceded by Constituency Created
Majority 11,105 (22.9%)
Personal details
Born (1962-05-30) 30 May 1962 (age 52)
Eastbourne, Sussex, England
Nationality British
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Elizabeth Juliet MacLauchlan
Children 3
Alma mater University of Warwick
Clare College, Cambridge
Profession Securities Fund Manager
Religion None (Atheism) [2]

Timothy Paul Loughton (born 30 May 1962) is a British Conservative Party politician, and has been Member of Parliament (MP) for East Worthing and Shoreham since the 1997 general election. Loughton was the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families from 2010-2012.

Education[edit]

Born in the south coast town of Eastbourne in East Sussex, Loughton was educated at Priory School, a state comprehensive school in Lewes in East Sussex, followed by the University of Warwick (where he was secretary of the University of Warwick Conservative Association), gaining a first class BA in classical civilisation in 1983. This was followed by Clare College at the University of Cambridge, where he researched Mesopotamian archaeology from 1983-4.

Life and career[edit]

Loughton followed a career in the City of London as a fund manager from 1984 for Fleming Private Asset Management, becoming a director from 1992-2000.

Registrable shareholdings are JP Morgan Chase; US investment bank, JP Morgan Elect Managed Income Investment Trust, JP Morgan Elect Managed Growth Investment Trust.

Parliamentary career[edit]

Loughton's first attempt at election to the House of Commons in the 1992 general election, when he stood against David Blunkett in the Sheffield Brightside constituency. Although unsuccessful, he was chosen in 1995 by the local party board as a candidate for his current constituency, then newly formed.

Loughton polled 43.9% of the vote in the 2005 general election, increasing his majority to 8,183. He finished the parliament as Shadow Minister for Children. In the 2010 general election he got 48.5% of the vote with a majority of 11,105.[3] On 13 May 2010 he was appointed as a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families.

In 2001 Loughton referred to then leader of the Conservative Party William Hague as "baldy and he has a funny accent" and compared him to former Labour Leader Neil Kinnock. He also said that Hague "may cost votes".[4]

Andrew Roth in The Guardian said of him that he was an "assiduous debater, although specialist opponents can consider his viewpoints complete and utter rubbish". During Prime Minister's Questions on 13 July 2011, the Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow told Loughton - following considerably loud cheers from the government benches and loud jeers from the opposition benches - that if he couldn't behave like an adult, then he ought to leave the chamber. Bercow then went on rebuke Loughton after he apparently described the behaviour in the Commons as "funny" claiming "Only in your mind Mr. Loughton is it funny. It's not funny at all, it's disgraceful."[5]

In February 2012 Loughton was part of a ministerial working group on how the law should be changed regarding how to amend the Children Act 1989. According to The Guardian newspaper of 3 February 2012 the working group aimed to include in the new Children's Act one "presumption of shared parenting" for children's fathers and mothers after cases of divorce or spousal break up.[6]

In 2010, Loughton appeared in the Channel 4 documentary series, Tower Block of Commons.[7]

In May 2012, he said marriage was a religious institution that should remain between one man and one woman.[8] On 5 February 2013 Loughton voted against the Second Reading of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.[9]

In September 2012, while on an official trip to Mauritius, Loughton was described as "being on another planet" by Ian Mearns, a Labour member of the Commons education select committee, when he was photographed on a beach with a glass of wine. The criticism centred around Loughton being on a foreign trip while there was a high profile investigation into GCSEs being undertaken.[10] It was later revealed in May 2013 by the Daily Mirror that Loughton's trip to Mauritius cost £1,445.[11]

Loughton was sacked as children's minister in the government reshuffle of September 2012. He was critical of the way he was sacked and the comments attracted criticism as they were seen as an attack on David Cameron.[12] Loughton is a vocal advocate for marriage tax breaks. Following his sacking, he took to The Conservative Woman website to argue that one earner families deserve what he called "a level playing field". [13]

In January 2013 Loughton was involved in a political dispute involving his work as a minister in the Department of Education when he compared Education Secretary Michael Gove to 'Young Mr Grace' from the British sitcom Are You Being Served?[14] The next day Loughton was described in a briefing from the Department of Education to The Spectator as a "lazy, incompetent narcissist obsessed only with self-promotion".[15] Loughton was accused on 26 February 2013 of engaging "In a significant escalation of hostilities" by tabling "hostile parliamentary questions" to the department of Education in relation to an aide of Gove.[16]

In September 2013, Loughton was forced to apologise to former children's minister Sarah Teather after he was recorded at an event saying the Department of Education as a result of Teather was a "family free zone" and that Teather "did not believe in family" as "she certainly didn't produce one of her own". The comments made by Loughton were branded "disgusting" by Jo Swinson the Liberal Democrat minister for Women and Equalities.[17]

Sussex Police investigation[edit]

In March 2013 it was revealed that Loughton had been investigated and interviewed under caution in relation to a complaint made under the Malicious Communications Act from a constituent. Loughton described the experience as "humiliating" and had caused him "to lose confidence in Sussex Police".[18] Later in March during a statement to the House of Commons Loughton described that he had "sacked" the constituent from "being one of his constituents" and how the constituent had described Loughton as an "arrogant, racist, lying arsehead" and that the constituent had "once stormed out of my surgery accusing me of being 'an effing Nazi'". Loughton said he had referred to correspondence from the constituent as "whingeing self-serving poisonous bollocks that seems to have become your hallmark" and had referred to them as "unkempt" and that use of the word was "eminently accurate". The use of the word unkempt had led to the police investigation. Loughton also said he had instructed his staff to "put the phone down" and that he "will not be responding to any communications" from the constituent. Loughton later threatened legal action against the constituent to prevent the constituent from communicating with him. [19]

In October 2013 Loughton made a request to the Speaker to grant a debate on a privileged motion regarding a matter of privilege, where Loughton accused Sussex Police of violating Parliamentary Privilege. The debate was granted and during the debate Loughton accused the Chief Constable of Sussex Police Martin Richards of "losing the plot" after he had been issued a Police Information Notice (PIN) by Sussex Police after sending a constituent a copy of a passage from Hansard informing the constituent they were no longer welcome to have any contact with him. Loughton asserted that the actions of Sussex Police in issuing the PIN were a "clear breach" of parliamentary privilege. The motion for the Standards and Privileges Committee to investigate the claims made by Loughton was granted.[20][21]

In January 2014 at a hearing of the Standards and Privileges Committee Loughton made claims of the police "fuelling the row" between himself and the constituent when he was issued the PIN by the Police. Richards apologised to the Standards and Privileges Committee for having an insufficient understanding of the law surrounding parliamentary privilege, but refused to apologise to Loughton for issuing the PIN against Loughton. Richards claimed he was unaware the Parliamentary Papers Act 1840 gave full legal protection to all parliamentary papers and blamed conflicting legal advice. Former deputy Chief Constable of Sussex Police Robin Merrett claimed he "could understand" the constituent being "alarmed" by the actions of Loughton and "fully supported" the police actions.[22]

In March 2014 the Standards and Privileges Committee found Sussex Police in contempt of Parliament in relation to the issuance of the PIN to Loughton. As a result of this Sussex Police were forced to issue an apology to Loughton.[23]

Personal life[edit]

Loughton married Elizabeth Juliet MacLauchlan in 1992, and they have a son, and two daughters.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Edward Timpson replaces Tim Loughton as Children’s Minister", Family Law Week, September 2012
  2. ^ "'Equality' was said so often it became as bruised as an old peach". Daily Mail (London). 
  3. ^ "UK > England > South East > Worthing East & Shoreham". BBC News. 2010. Retrieved 6 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "'Baldy' Hague may cost votes, says Tory". BBC News. 27 March 2001. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "PMQs: Speaker Bercow tells off 'disgraceful' minister Tim Loughton". BBC News. 13 July 2011. 
  6. ^ Pearse, Damien (3 February 2012). "Divorced fathers to get more contact with their children". The Guardian (London). 
  7. ^ Tower Block of Commons - Channel 4, Channel 4
  8. ^ Tory ministers Philip Hammond and Tim Loughton come out against equal marriage for gay couples, Pink News, 13 May 2012
  9. ^ {http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm130205/debtext/130205-0004.htm} The House of Commons.2013.Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill 2012-2013.
  10. ^ "No minister: Relaxed MP caught with pants UP as Cameron considers cull". The Mirror. 3 September 2012. Retrieved 3 February 2013. 
  11. ^ "Tim Loughton's trip to Mauritius cost taxpayer £1,445 as well as top Tory his ministerial job". The Daily Mirror. 7 May 2013. Retrieved 10 June 2013. 
  12. ^ "David Cameron faces a fresh revolt as sacked ministers go on the attack". The Evening Standard. 11 September 2012. Retrieved 3 February 2013. 
  13. ^ http://conservativewoman.co.uk/tim-loughton-the-playing-field-for-families-just-got-a-little-bumpier/
  14. ^ "Sacked minister in astonishing blast at Tory colleague's "terribly anachronistic" handling of education". 16 January 2013. Retrieved 3 February 2013. 
  15. ^ "Michael Gove: I've no idea which of my staff called Tim Loughton a lazy, incompetent narcissist". The Daily Telegraph (London). 22 January 2013. Retrieved 3 February 2013. 
  16. ^ Wright, Oliver (26 February 2013). "Tory ex-minister, Tim Loughton, turns his sights on Michael Gove's adviser". The Independent (London). Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  17. ^ "Tim Loughton to apologise for Sarah Teather family jibe". BBC News. 16 September 2013. Retrieved 17 March 2014. 
  18. ^ "When did 'unkempt' become a racial insult?". Daily Mail (London). 3 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  19. ^ "MP Tim Loughton 'sacks' constituent after racism row". BBC News. 14 March 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  20. ^ "Tim Loughton accuses police chief of 'losing the plot'". BBC News. 9 October 2013. Retrieved 31 October 2013. 
  21. ^ "MP slams police force for prosecution threat over claim he harassed a 'nightmare constituent' by sending a copy of Hansard". Daily Mail (London). 9 October 2013. Retrieved 31 October 2013. 
  22. ^ "No police apology for MP Tim Loughton in harassment row". BBC News. 28 January 2014. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  23. ^ "Sussex MP gets apology from police". 14 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
(new constituency)
Member of Parliament for East Worthing and Shoreham
1997–present
Incumbent