|Member of Parliament
7 June 2001
|Preceded by||Eileen Gordon|
17 March 1966 |
Romford, London, England
Andrew Richard Rosindell // (born 17 March 1966) is a British Conservative politician. He is the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Romford constituency in Greater London. He is the international director of the European Foundation, chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Flags & Heraldry Committee, UK's All-Party Parliamentary Group on the British Overseas Territories and member of the Flag Institute.
Rosindell was born in Romford as the son of a school dinner lady. He attended Rise Park School, where Rosindell was bullied, and then Marshalls Park School. Before entering politics on a full-time basis he was a freelance journalist, PR Consultant and researcher for another MP.
He was chairman of the Young Conservatives from 1993 to 1994. He was chairman of the International Young Democrat Union from 1998 to 2002. From 1997–2001, he was Director of the European Foundation think tank.
Before becoming an MP he was a local councillor in Romford on Havering Council, winning the Chase Cross and Havering-atte-Bower ward from the Liberal Democrats in 1990. In 1998 he took an 88% share of the vote, a record for a Conservative in a London borough.
After unsuccessful attempts to win seats in Glasgow Provan and Thurrock, Rosindell finally reached Parliament in the 2001 general election, defeating the former teacher and Labour MP, Eileen Gordon. Rosindell won 18,931 votes (53% share) – a swing of 9.2% from Labour to Conservative. It was one of the few seats the Conservatives managed to regain after the Labour landslide at the 1997 election. During the election, a crucial aspect of his election campaign involved canvassing with his Staffordshire Bull Terrier Spike, who wore a union flag waistcoat. This was a tactic Rosindell had employed in previous elections, such as his unsuccessful campaign in Glasgow Provan in 1992 
At the 2005 election, Rosindell increased his majority to 11,589, winning 21,560 votes on a 59.1% share. This was the second highest Conservative share of the vote anywhere in the UK. During the election campaign a clash between Labour and Conservative activists distributing leaflets at Romford railway station resulted in the police being called.
Rosindell was elected a vice-chairman of the Conservative Party in 2004, and in December 2005 he became an Opposition Whip. In July 2007, he was appointed as a Shadow Minister for Home Affairs with particular responsibility for animal welfare.
On 5 February 2008, Rosindell became founding chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Flag Group (APPFG) and proposed a Union Flag Bill under the Ten Minute Rule. The APPFG changed its name to the Flags & Heraldry Committee in April 2010.
At the 2010 election, Rosindell increased his majority to 16,594, winning 26,031 votes on a reduced 56.0% share. He has since been elected onto the Foreign Affairs Select Committee as well as taking the Chairmanship of various all-party parliamentary groups. In July 2010, Rosindell was appointed by the Chairman of the Conservative Party, Sayeeda Warsi, onto the board of the Westminster Foundation for Democracy.
In 2012, Rosindell became chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Zoos and Aquariums Group.
At the 2015 election Rosindell was re-elected with 25,067 votes, on a 51% share, and also gained re-elected on to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee.
In September 2015, Rosindell presented a Ten Minute Rule Bill to Parliament entitled the United Kingdom Borders (Control and Sovereignty) Bill. In his speech presenting the Bill, he argued that Britain must take back control of its borders from the European Union, asserting that "A nation that does not retain sovereignty over its national borders will ultimately be powerless to determine its own destiny". The speech also advocated a policy of controlled immigration, arguing that public services were unable to keep up with the number of people entering the country every year. Since the start of 2016, Rosindell has also been a member of the Advisory Board of the UK-based 'Polar Regions' think-tank Polar Research and Policy Initiative.
In an Early day motion of 3 November 2016, as a celebration of the Brexit vote and Britain withdrawing from the European Union Rosindell argued for a return to the broadcasting of the National Anthem at the end of BBC 1 transmissions each day. The practice was dropped in 1997. That evening, the BBC's Newsnight programme ended its nightly broadcast with a statement that it was happy to accede to Rosindell's request, before ending with a clip of the Sex Pistols performing their punk version of God Save the Queen".
At the 2017 election Rosindell was re-elected with 29,671 votes, on a 59.4% share.
Rosindell's political views are firmly right-wing: he is a Eurosceptic and supports the re-introduction of the death penalty and the detention of asylum seekers. He is a member of The Freedom Association, and was a member of the Monday Club, until he was compelled to resign in 2001 by the then Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith. Journalist Ann Treneman in The Times described him as a "flag fanatic and super patriot".
In 2012 he unsuccessfully attempted to introduce the United Kingdom Borders Bill in 2012, a private member's bill aiming to create a dedicated entry queue for citizens of countries where the British Queen is head of state and introduce pictures of the queen and more royal symbols at UK borders. He reiterated calls for preferential treatment of "Her Majesty's subjects" visiting Britain in 2015, whilst also calling for the immigration system to favour Commonwealth citizens.
Rosindell has spoken in favour of a federal UK and proposed a bill calling for a separate English Parliament, whilst declaring himself opposed to the idea of imposing English votes for English Laws restrictions on the Westminster Parliament. Rosindell proposed in 2012 that Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories should be represented in the UK parliament like dependencies of Australia, Denmark, France and the Netherlands have been.
Rosindell joined Philip Davies and Christopher Chope in repeatedly blocking a backbench Bill banning the use of wild animals in circuses from progressing through Parliament, finally blocking it by lodging an objection in March 2015. The bill had the support of the Coalition government, the Labour opposition and public opinion. Rosindell had earlier argued the circus is a "Great British institution…[that] deserves to be defended against the propaganda and exaggerations".
In 2017 Rosindell said “The humiliation of having a pink European Union passport will now soon be over and the United Kingdom nationals can once again feel pride and self-confidence in their own nationality when travelling, just as the Swiss and Americans can do. National identity matters and there is no better way of demonstrating this today than by bringing back this much-loved national symbol when travelling overseas.”
At the beginning of the MPs expenses scandal The Daily Telegraph reported that Rosindell "claimed more than £125,000 in second home expenses for a flat in London, while designating his childhood home 17 miles away – where his mother lived – as his main address" and between "2006 and 2008 claimed the maximum £400 a month for food".
In 2010, the BBC accused Rosindell of breaching Parliamentary rules by accepting subsidised overseas trips to Gibraltar and subsequently raising multiple Gibraltar-related issues in Parliament without disclosing the trips in the Register of Members' Interests. The journalist Simon Heffer dubbed him the 'King of subsidised jaunts' for sitting on "90 groups concerned with overseas locations or causes."
In the Parliamentary year, 2014/15, Rosindell claimed £170,000 in expenses. £144,000 of this, however, was accounted for as staffing costs.
In September 2010, Rosindell sponsored the first Erotica event to be held in the Houses of Parliament. Rosindell maintained that he was promoting the hosts, a Romford-based business, as was his duty as the constituency MP.
In June 2012, Rosindell was criticised for expressing "huge admiration" for former Chilean President Augusto Pinochet. The comments were condemned by Labour Leader Ed Miliband MP and neighbouring Labour MP Jon Cruddas. Rosindell made the comments whilst defending a local colleague who had been criticised for apparently endorsing Pinochet, and claimed that Pinochet had overthrown a "far worse" communist regime and that "we should be grateful" for the assistance Pinochet's Chile provided to the British forces retaking the Falkland Islands.
He made the national headlines in September 2014 when his campaign vehicle was photographed whilst illegally parked in a disabled parking space in Central London.
In February 2015, he cast doubt on the ability of Rachel Reeves (then Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions) to handle that ministerial responsibility in a putative post-election Labour cabinet, as she would be taking maternity leave soon after the election and would then have a young child to care for following her return to the post in September. He was criticised for the remarks by Labour MPs whilst David Cameron chose to distance himself from the comments.
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- Rosindell, Andrew. "Andrew Rosindell MP: Foreign trips and rule breaches". BBC. Retrieved 30 March 2015.
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- Garnier, Mark (2012-06-15). "Tory MP has "huge admiration" for Augusto Pinochet". New Statesman. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
- by Ramzy Alwakeel (2012-06-14). "Rainham and Dagenham MP Jon Cruddas slams Romford MP Andrew Rosindell over Pinochet comments". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
- Ramzy Alwakeel (2012-06-19). "Ed Miliband calls on David Cameron to distance himself from Romford MP Andrew Rosindell's Pinochet comments". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
- Who in an interview with the Romford Recorder stated that "Augusto Pinochet assumed power in a coup d'état and overthrew a democratically elected government. According to various reports and investigations thousands of people were killed in this process, and tens of thousands were interned and tortured by his regime".
- Jack Blanchard (2014-09-04). "Tory MP under fire after his 4x4 is spotted in disabled bay". Mirror Online. Retrieved 2017-09-06.
- Perraudin, Francis (23 February 2015). "Cameron hits back at Tory MP's 'outrageous' maternity leave comments". Guardian. Retrieved 30 March 2015.
- Andrew Rosindell official site
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 2010–present
- Contributions in Parliament during 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09 2009–10 at Hansard Archives
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Romford