Bob Russell (British politician)
|Sir Bob Russell|
|Member of Parliament
1 May 1997 – 30 March 2015
|Preceded by||Constituency created|
|Succeeded by||Will Quince|
31 March 1946 |
|Political party||Liberal Democrat (1988–present)|
Sir Robert Edward "Bob" Russell (born 31 March 1946) is a former Liberal Democrat politician in the United Kingdom who was the Member of Parliament for Colchester from 1997 to 2015. He was first elected at the United Kingdom general election, 1997 and won subsequent re-election in 2001, 2005 and 2010; he was defeated in United Kingdom general election, 2015 by the Conservative Party candidate and current Colchester MP Will Quince.
Prior to his election to the House of Commons, Russell was a councillor representing New Town ward continuously from 1978 to 2002. He initially won election as a Labour Party candidate before defecting to the Social Democratic Party in 1981, and standing as a Liberal Democrat candidate from 1988 onwards. He held a dual mandate of minister of parliament and councillor from 1997 to 2002.
Russell was the Liberal Democrats' spokesman on Culture, Media and Sport from 2002 to 2005, when he was replaced by Don Foster. He was a member of the Liberal Democrat Shadow Defence team until the formation of the Conservative – Liberal Democrat Coalition Government on 11 May 2010, at which point he became a backbencher.
In 2011 Russell was a member of the special Select Committee set up to scrutinise the Bill that became the Armed Forces Act 2011.
Russell is a supporter of Votes at 16.
In December 2010 a reply he wrote to a letter from a constituent concerned about the cost of the coming Royal Wedding was published in the press. In it Russell told his constituent to "get a life and stop whinging". In 2011 he followed this up with another contentious letter to a constituent. Referring to him as a "rubbish man", Russell accused those in support of the Visual Arts Facility (later becoming Firstsite) as "expecting the council to fund their social life".
In 2012, Russell was found to have broken parliamentary expenses rules after claiming more than £70,000 over seven years for an office owned by a company in which he was a major shareholder. He was found to have acted in good faith, but was found to be in "clear breach" of the rules. Russell apologised, stating: "I have not personally made a financial gain from the arrangements. Rather I have made a significant personal contribution to provide an office which is fit for purpose at no additional cost to the public purse." He added: "The fact that no further action is to be taken indicates that my breach was a technical one."
- The London Gazette: . 31 December 2011.
- Porter, Andrew (28 October 2010). "Housing benefit cuts to stay, says David Cameron". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 31 October 2010.
- "Colchester constituency result". BBC News. 7 May 2010. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
- "Select Committee on the Armed Forces Bill". parliament.uk. Retrieved 20 Sep 2013.
- "Register of All-Party Groups". UK Parliament. 9 July 2009. Archived from the original on July 15, 2009. Retrieved 10 March 2010.
- Bob Russell (30 November 2005). "EDM 1169/2005: Return of Young's bitter to Strangers' Bar". UK Parliament. Retrieved 10 March 2010.
- Graeme Wilson (5 November 2008). "Tessa's £10,000 Lewis race trip". The Sun (London). Retrieved 10 March 2010.
- "MP to anti-royal constituent: get a life and stop whinging". The Daily Telegraph. 13 December 2010. Retrieved 16 December 2010.
- "MP Bob attacks Vaf fan in angry letter". Colchester Gazette. 12 April 2011. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
- "Sir Bob Russell MP 'broke Commons expenses rules'". BBC News. Retrieved 13 February 2015.
- Whitehead, Jeff (1999). Colchester United: From Graham to Wadsworth – A Complete Record. Desert Island Books. ISBN 1-874287-27-9.
- Bob Russell MP official constituency website
- Profile at the Liberal Democrats
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|New constituency||Member of Parliament for Colchester