Daniel Kawczynski

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Daniel Kawczynski

Official portrait of Daniel Kawczynski MP crop 2.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Shrewsbury and Atcham
Assumed office
5 May 2005
Preceded byPaul Marsden
Majority11,217 (19.0%)
Personal details
Born (1972-01-24) 24 January 1972 (age 49)
Warsaw, Poland
Political partyConservative
Kate Lumb
(m. 2000; div. 2011)

(m. 2019)
ResidenceShrewsbury, Shropshire, England
Alma materUniversity of Stirling
WebsiteOfficial Website

Daniel Robert Kawczynski (Polish: Kawczyński (Kav-Shink-Skee), Polish pronunciation: [kaˈft͡ʂɨɲskʲi]; born 24 January 1972) is a British Conservative Party politician.

In the past he has served as Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, a parliamentary aide to the former Welsh Secretary David Jones,[1] as well as serving as a member of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee and as Special Advisor to Prime Minister David Cameron on Central and Eastern Europe and on Central and Eastern Europeans living in the United Kingdom.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Kawczynski was born on 24 January 1972 in Warsaw. His parents were Leonard and Halina Kawczynski.[3] He came to Britain with his mother at the age of six.[4][5] He was educated at St George's College, Weybridge, an independent Roman Catholic school in Surrey, followed by Birmingham Polytechnic and then the University of Stirling where he studied business studies and French, graduating in 1994.[6][7] He served as president of the university's Conservative Association in 1991.

He worked in the business entertainment industry before he became an international account manager in the telecommunications industry, a position he held for ten years from 1994 to 2004.[3][7]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Kawczynski unsuccessfully stood as the Conservative Party candidate in the 2001 general election for Ealing Southall in London, coming second with 18% of the vote.[8] At the following general election Kawczynski was selected as the Conservative Party candidate for the Shrewsbury and Atcham constituency. He was elected at the 2005 general election, succeeding the Labour MP Paul Marsden with 37.7% of the vote.[9]

Upon entering Parliament he established the All Party Parliamentary Group for milk farmers to help milk farmers in his constituency.[10] He sat as a member of both the International Development Select Committee and the Justice Select Committee, but was criticised by the Birmingham Post in 2009 for failing to regularly attend the meetings of the Select Committees to which he had been appointed.[11] Kawczynski was recorded as having attended only 12.5% of all Justice Select Committee meetings and 31.3% of International Development Select Committee meetings during the previous last Parliamentary session. He stated the figure for the international development committee was wrong and he had been unable to attend the justice committee meetings because they clashed.[11]

Kawczynski speaking to the media about the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008.

In 2007, he signed an Early Day Motion that welcomed the "positive contribution made to the health of the nation by the NHS homeopathic hospitals".[12] In May 2008, he voted to lower the abortion time limit to 12 weeks,[13] and has said that he believes an abortion limit of 24 weeks is incompatible with the kind of "Christian society" he wishes to live in.[14] He voted against a House of Lords amendment to abolish the offences of blasphemy and blasphemous libel under common law.[15] In October 2009, Kawczynski appeared on The Doha Debates as a delegate supporting the motion of "This house deplores the release of Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset al-Megrahi".[16] In the wake of the Westminster Parliamentary Expenses scandal in 2009, Kawczynski was ordered to repay £4000 for rent costs that he had over-claimed.[17] In 2010, Kawczynski called for the ban on fox hunting to be repealed by the Conservative government.[18]

He was re-elected at the 2010 general election with 43.9% of the vote.[19] In September 2012, he was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the new Secretary of State for Wales, David Jones.[1] When Jones lost his role in 2014, Kawczynski became advisor to the Prime Minister David Cameron on Eastern and Central European Diaspora.[20] Kawczynski voted in favour of same sex marriage in 2013, stating shortly afterwards that he was in a same-sex relationship. Kawczynski was chair of the All-Party Group for Saudi Arabia between 2011 and 2016, during his time as chairman he led delegations to the country.[21][22][23][24] he was chair of the All-Party Group for Libya but that group has now ceased to exist.[25] In October 2013, Kawczynski reportedly told a one-legged drug addict in a wheelchair who was begging outside the Houses of Parliament to 'get a job'. Kawczynski said he had offered the beggar "useful advice", stating: "He asked me for money so I asked him what he was doing to find a job. He had difficulties in literacy and numeracy. I told him there were government initiatives to help him with this."[26][27][28]

Kawczynski held his seat in the 2015 general election.[29] In the 2016 Conservative Party leadership election, he supported Michael Gove.[30]

He was re-elected in the 2017 general election. It was reported in early November 2017 that Kawczynski had been reprimanded in front of witnesses by Eleanor Laing, Conservative MP and the deputy speaker, for asking a young researcher employed by Laing to go on a date with a rich businessman contact of his who was "older than her father".[31] The incident in January 2013, according to Channel 4 News in November 2017, was preceded by an intermediary making the same approach several times. Laura Hughes, writing for The Daily Telegraph, reported that Kawczynski had been referred to the Conservative's new disciplinary committee. He has admitted to the incident,[clarification needed] but rejects the accusation of inappropriate conduct.[32]

Kawczynski expressed support for a prospective leadership bid by Jacob Rees-Mogg in 2018.[33] From February 2018, Kawczynski was paid £6,000 per month by the Electrum Group, a New York City-based investment, advisory and asset management firm owned by Thomas Kaplan. Kawczynski defended his association with the American company by saying that work for them would be done in his spare time.[34]

On 2 February 2019, Kawczynski was criticised[by whom?] for tweeting that the UK had received no Marshall Plan aid after World War II, in the context of a complaint about the alleged attitude of the European Union. He said, "Britain helped to liberate half of Europe. She mortgaged herself up to eye balls in process. No Marshall Plan for us only for Germany. We gave up war reparations in 1990. We put £370 billion into EU since we joined. Watch the way ungrateful EU treats us now. We will remember." It was pointed out that Britain received 26% of Marshall Plan aid, more than any other country.[35][36] After challenges, Kawczynski did not delete the tweet nor retract it.[citation needed]

In February 2020, Kawczynski was reprimanded for sharing a platform with right-wing populist politicians such as Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán and the former deputy prime minister of Italy Matteo Salvini, at a conference organised by the Edmund Burke Foundation.[37] Labour MP Andrew Gwynne called for Kawczynski to be suspended from Parliament.[38] He was later given a formal warning by the Conservative Party, but did not have the whip withdrawn.[39]

Abuse of power as a Member of Parliament[edit]

On 14 June 2021 the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards found that Kawczynski had acted in an intimidatory and threatening manner towards House of Commons staff and that he had "abused his power as a Member of Parliament by making exaggerated and malicious claims". He was found to have intimidated staff having drunk a “significant” amount of alcohol.[40] Kawczynski chose not to appeal the Commissioner’s decision. A panel set up to determine what punishment he should face decided Kawczynski should apologise in the Commons chamber, a finding he appealed against. A second panel found the sanction was “proper and proportionate”. [41][42]

Political views[edit]

Saudi Arabia[edit]

In 2015, Kawczynski was described as a strong supporter of the Saudi Arabian government.[43] On one of his trips to Saudi Arabia, Kawczynski told Salman Al Saud how proud he was of the military cooperation between the two countries. He later said that he was writing "the most pro-Saudi book ever written by a British politician" and that he had been "battling against extraordinary ignorance and prejudice against Saudi Arabia for many years".[43]

Following an appearance on Newsnight in September 2018, in which he defended the Saudi regime's approach to the war in Yemen and accused the BBC of bias, Kawczynski threatened legal action after its editor Ian Katz suggested his strength of feeling on the issue might be linked to the size of the budget for his expenses on trips to Saudi Arabia.[44] As of June 2021, Kawczynski has not pursued legal action.

After Michael Gove cancelled a prison contract with Saudi Arabia, Kawczynski was so enraged that he slapped his forehead and shouted "no!" during a parliamentary debate on the issue.[43][45]

Anglo-Polish relations[edit]

Since becoming the chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Poland in 2014, Kawczynski has supported a range of enterprises from his constituency in seeking business partners and export markets in Poland and other Central and Eastern European countries, offering support and advice.[46] Kawczynski has been a frequent visitor to the British Polish Chamber of Commerce in Warsaw where he often described the importance of trade between Poland and the United Kingdom.

In 2016, Kawczynski was distinguished as an "Outstanding Pole Abroad of 2016" for his efforts in promoting trade and political relations between the United Kingdom and his country of birth.[47] In 2017, Kawczynski joined calls for Germany to pay war reparations for crimes committed against the Allies and for the destruction of Poland during the Second World War. On 15 October 2017, Kawczynski sent a letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel urging her to stop demanding money from the UK during the Brexit negotiations and pay Poland.[48] In 2019, Kawczynski said he had asked the Polish Government to veto any requests for an extension of the Article 50 period that might be made by the UK Government.[49][50]

European Union[edit]

Kawczynski is a vocal supporter of Brexit and former member of the European Research Group (the ERG), which he left in April 2019.[51] In September 2018, Kawczynski, who strongly supports Brexit, said on Twitter that EU lemon growers are inefficient, and that the EU imposed tariffs on the import of fruit from non-EU Mediterranean countries, causing higher prices to consumers. Both claims were refuted.[52][53][35]

Personal life[edit]

In 2000, Kawczynski married Kate Lumb and they had a daughter; the couple divorced in 2011.[54] In June 2013, he announced to his Conservative Association that his new partner was male.[55] He was the second MP in Britain to come out as bisexual, the first being Liberal Democrat Simon Hughes.[56][57] He married his Brazilian partner of eight years, Fernando, on 9 November 2019, in a civil partnership ceremony in the House of Commons.[58][59] Kawczynski is a practising Catholic.[60] In 2010, Kawczynski published a book called Seeking Gaddafi about Muammar Gaddafi of Libya.


  1. ^ a b Cornock, David (10 September 2012). "David Jones appoints English MP as his 'eyes and ears'". BBC News.
  2. ^ "Shrewsbury's MP Daniel Kawczynski relishing his new advisory role for David Cameron". Shropshire Star. Retrieved 28 August 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Kawczynski, Daniel, (born 24 Jan. 1972), MP (C) Shrewsbury and Atcham, since 2005". WHO'S WHO & WHO WAS WHO. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.U45508. Retrieved 25 May 2020.
  4. ^ Andy McSmith (14 October 2015). "Daniel Kawczynski: 'Honorable member for Saudi Arabia' up in arms over prison training reversal". independent.co.uk. Retrieved 29 June 2017.
  5. ^ Which Tory went where?, The Guardian, 1 Jun 2007
  6. ^ a b "Daniel Robert Kawczynski". Politics.co.uk. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  7. ^ "Ealing Southall". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 22 October 2008. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  8. ^ "Shrewsbury and Atcham". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 4 July 2008. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  9. ^ "APPG for Dairy Farmers to meet with farmer co-ops - Farming UK News". Farminguk.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
  10. ^ a b "Erdington and Shrewsbury MPs under-fire for non-attendance". Birmingham Post. 9 April 2009.
  11. ^ "Early day motion 1240: NHS Homeopathic Hospitals". Parliament.uk. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  12. ^ "Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill – Change abortion limit from 24 weeks to 12 weeks – rejected". The Public Whip. 28 May 2008.
  13. ^ "BBC News: MP Daniel Kawczynski interviewed on cabinet ministers' support for cut in abortion time limit". Christian Concern. 7 October 2012.
  14. ^ "Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill: Blasphemy". The Public Whip. 6 May 2008.
  15. ^ Walker, Tim (19 May 2009). "Daniel Kawczynski enters the den of very mad dog". The Daily Telegraph.
  16. ^ "Expenses claim figures are 'skewed' says MP Daniel Kawczynski". Shropshire Star. 13 September 2009. Retrieved 5 August 2018.
  17. ^ Bowcott, Owen (29 April 2010). "Hunting ban should be repealed early in Conservative government, says Tory MP". The Guardian. London.
  18. ^ "Shrewsbury & Atcham". BBC. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  19. ^ "Shrewsbury's MP Daniel Kawczynski relishing his new advisory role for David Cameron". Shropshirestar.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
  20. ^ Commons, The Committee Office, House of. "House of Commons - Register Of All-Party Groups as at 30 March 2015: Saudi Arabia". Publications.parliament.uk.
  21. ^ Commons, The Committee Office, House of. "House of Commons - Register Of All-Party Groups as at 30 July 2015 : Contents". Publications.parliament.uk.
  22. ^ "Daniel leads All Party Parliamentary Delegation to Saudi Arabia". daniel4shrewsbury.co.uk. Archived from the original on 2 March 2014. Retrieved 26 February 2014.
  23. ^ Kawczynski updated this on Newsnight 11/9/15 stating that Yasmin Qureshi was the current chair of the All-Party Group for Saudi Arabia
  24. ^ "Daniel meets Former Libyan Head of State". daniel4shrewsbury.co.uk. Archived from the original on 3 September 2014. Retrieved 28 August 2014.
  25. ^ "Tory MP tells one legged-beggar to get a job". The Daily Telegraph. 21 October 2013.
  26. ^ "One-legged drug addict beggar names and shames Tory MP Daniel Kawczynski who told him to 'get a job'". The Independent. 21 October 2013.
  27. ^ "Daniel Kawczynski, Tory MP, Tells One-Legged Beggar To 'Get A Job'". The Huffington Post. 21 October 2013.
  28. ^ "Live UK election results". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
  29. ^ Walker, Jonathan (30 June 2016). "Oops! MP Daniel Kawczynski backs 'Michael Grove' for Tory leader". Birminghammail.co.uk. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
  30. ^ Wheeler, Caroline (5 November 2017). "Daniel Poulter, Tory former minister, accused of putting hand up MPs' skirts". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 5 November 2017. (subscription required)
  31. ^ Hughes, Laura (5 November 2017). "Third Tory MP referred to party's investigation committee". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  32. ^ "Theresa May not an 'authentic Brexiteer' and could 'destabilise' Conservatives 'like never before' - MP". Sky News. 23 May 2018.
  33. ^ Todman, Lucy (27 March 2018). "Shrewsbury MP Daniel Kawczynski hits back after taking second job". The Shropshire Star.
  34. ^ a b Khan, Shehab (3 February 2019). "Pro-Brexit Tory MP criticised over false statements about Europe and Britain after Second World War". The Independent.
  35. ^ "Pro-Brexit MP makes 'totally false' claim about Europe after WW2 on Twitter". Shropshire Star. 2 February 2019.
  36. ^ Syal, Rajeev; Giuffrida, Angela (4 February 2020). "Tories under pressure over MP who spoke at event with far-right figures". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  37. ^ "MP criticised for attending 'far-right' conference". BBC News. 4 February 2020. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  38. ^ Rajeev Syal (6 February 2020). "Tory MP told by party attendance at far-right event 'unacceptable'". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 February 2020.
  39. ^ https://www.parliament.uk/business/news/2021/june/independent-expert-panel-calls-on-daniel-kawczynski-mp-to-apologise-in-the-house-of-commons-for-breach-of-parliaments-bullying-and-harassment-policy/
  40. ^ Aubrey Allegretti (14 June 2021). "Tory MP told to apologise for 'intimidatory' behaviour". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 June 2021.
  41. ^ Tory MP apologises for bullying parliamentary staff
  42. ^ a b c "The 'Honorable member for Saudi Arabia' up in arms over prison training reversal". Independent.co.uk. 14 October 2015.
  43. ^ Johnston, Ian (September 2015). "Daniel Kawczynski: Tory MP considers legal action after 'patronising' BBC Newsnight interview". The Independent. Retrieved 9 February 2017.
  44. ^ Michael Deacon (13 October 2015). "The Tory MP standing up for the real victim... Saudi Arabia". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
  45. ^ "MP Daniel Kawczynski: MP's Offer of Help with Export for Shropshire Businesses". Loveshrewsbury.com. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
  46. ^ "Wybitni Polacy w Wielkiej Brytanii 2016 nagrodzeni". Pangeamagazine.com. Retrieved 2 June 2017.
  47. ^ "Shrewsbury's MP calls for Germany to pay $1trillion war reparations to Poland". Shropshirestar.com. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  48. ^ "Calls for Shrewsbury MP to publish Brexit letter to Polish government". Shropshirestar.com. 24 January 2019. Retrieved 7 February 2019.
  49. ^ "Polish-born MP accused of 'reckless' attempt to block Brexit delay". Sky News. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  50. ^ @DKShrewsbury (8 April 2019). "Have decided to resign from ERG. Despite excellent Chairmanship by @Jacob_Rees_Mogg who has accommodated all views I can no longer be a member of caucas [sic] which is preventing WA4 from passing. Hardcore element of 'Unicorn' dreamers now actually endangering #Brexit" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  51. ^ Jasmine Andersson (25 September 2018). "Brexiteer MP who tweeted about 'EU protectionist racket' while clutching lemons left sour after being schooled by an expert". inews.co.uk. Retrieved 3 February 2019.
  52. ^ "Pro-Brexit MP ends up looking like a bit of a lemon..." ITV News. Retrieved 3 February 2019.
  53. ^ "Kawczynski, Daniel, (born 24 Jan. 1972), MP (C) Shrewsbury and Atcham, since 2005". Who's Who. 2007. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.45508.
  54. ^ Eden, Richard (30 June 2013). "Divorced Conservative MP: 'I've fallen in love with a man'". The Telegraph.
  55. ^ Legge, James (30 June 2013). "Tory MP Daniel Kawczynski comes out as bisexual". The Independent. London.
  56. ^ Cohen, Benjamin (26 January 2006). "Simon Hughes: "I'm bisexual"". PinkNews. Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  57. ^ Jones, Aimee (10 November 2019). "Daniel Kawczynski marries long-term partner in House of Commons ceremony". Shropshire Star. Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  58. ^ Kawczynski, Daniel [@DKShrewsbury] (8 November 2019). "Tomorrow I get married to my Brazilian partner of 8 years Fernando. This evening spent night with 20 Jewish friends in Finchley for special meal. One of the best aspects of our island nation story is how we have welcomed people from all over world to join us. @ShrewsburyChron" (Tweet). Retrieved 19 June 2020 – via Twitter.
  59. ^ Andrews, Mark (5 September 2019). "MP talks about anguish of his sexuality". Shropshire Star. Retrieved 20 February 2021.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Paul Marsden
Member of Parliament for Shrewsbury and Atcham