Michelle Brown

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Michelle Brown

Michelle Brown AM.png
Member of the Welsh Assembly
for North Wales
Assumed office
5 May 2016
Personal details
Born (1969-12-30) 30 December 1969 (age 49)
Political partyIndependent
Other political
affiliations
UK Independence Party (Until 2019)
Alma materStaffordshire University

Michelle Margaret Freda Brown (born 30 December 1969) is a British politician who has been a Member of the National Assembly for Wales for North Wales since the 2016 election. In March 2019 she resigned from the UK Independence Party to become an independent.

Education and election[edit]

Michelle Brown grew up in Mostyn and was educated at St Richard Gwyn Catholic High School, Flint, and at convents in Holywell and Holyhead.[1] She graduated with a bachelor's and master's degree in Law and a Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from Staffordshire University.[2]

In the 2016 National Assembly for Wales election she was elected as a UKIP AM for North Wales.[1]

2017 Controversies[edit]

In February 2017 Future Inns, a hotel in Cardiff Bay accused Brown of smoking "recreational drugs" in her hotel room. The hotel stated the room could not be used for 24 hours and issued a £250 bill to Brown for the cleaning cost.[3]

In July 2017, a recording of a telephone conversation emerged, in which Brown was heard describing the Labour MP for Streatham, Chuka Umunna, as a "fucking coconut". The call was recorded in May 2016 to her then senior adviser Nigel Williams, whom she sacked later that month. Brown said her language was "inappropriate" and apologised, although also stating that she "was using language that friends and colleagues often do when chatting to each other". However, Brown stated that she stood by her comments that Umunna had "as much understanding of an ordinary black man’s experience as I have". Brown was also recorded referring to Tristram Hunt, who was then Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central as a twat. Brown's comments were referred to the assembly's standards commissioner and Labour, Conservative, and Plaid Cymru members called for Brown to be sanctioned.[4] Brown was suspended for a week without pay after an investigation by the assembly's standards committee, a decision which was criticised by Neil Hamilton, leader of the UKIP group in the assembly.[5]

It was revealed in July 2017 that the UKIP branch in Delyn had called for her de-selection, accusing her of "abrasive and discourteous" behaviour towards local members.[6]

UKIP[edit]

In May 2016, she voted for Neil Hamilton as leader of the UKIP group in the Welsh Assembly and against Nathan Gill.[7] In March 2018 she was chosen by the UKIP Assembly group over Hamilton's choice of Gareth Bennett to be their representative on the party National Executive Committee[8] and in May 2018 she backed Caroline Jones to replace Hamilton.[9] Brown expressed regret at Jones leaving the group after Bennett won a ballot of party members intended to settle the group's leadership.[10]

Independent[edit]

In March 2019 Brown resigned from UKIP to become an independent AM, accusing the UKIP group of sexism.[11] According to Wales Online, Brown was told she would not be welcome in the Brexit Party when it formed a Welsh Assembly group in May 2019.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Welsh Election 2016: Labour just short as UKIP wins seats". BBC News. Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  2. ^ "Michelle Brown". UKIP Wales. Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  3. ^ Williams, James (1 February 2017). "UKIP AM Michelle Brown denies hotel's drug accusation". BBC News. Retrieved 15 May 2019.
  4. ^ "UKIP AM uses racial slur about Labour MP Chuka Umunna". BBC News. 22 July 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2019.
  5. ^ Morris, Steven (2 May 2018). "Welsh assembly excludes Ukip member for racial term". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  6. ^ "UKIP members' bid to deselect AM Michelle Brown". BBC News. 20 July 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2019.
  7. ^ Shipton, Martin (11 May 2016). "Civil war among Ukip's new AMs as Neil Hamilton ousts Nathan Gill". walesonline. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  8. ^ "Brown replaces Bennett as UKIP AMs rep". BBC News. 15 March 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Neil Hamilton out as UKIP assembly leader". BBC News. 17 May 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  10. ^ Deans, David (12 September 2018). "And then there were four". BBC News. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  11. ^ Deans, David (26 March 2019). "Another UKIP AM resigns from party". Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  12. ^ Shipton, Martin (11 May 2019). "Four Welsh Assembly Members in talks to join the Brexit Party". walesonline. Wales Online. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
National Assembly for Wales
Preceded by
Janet Haworth
Assembly Member for North Wales
2016 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent