Ben Dean-Titterrell

Politics and beer. Travel content coming soon…

Month: October, 2016

Bernard Jenkin weekly: No.3

Week 24 October – 30 October

In a week when the government announced it would be going ahead with the plan to build a third runway at Heathrow airport, Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith resigned and triggered a by-election where he will run as an independent in protest over the Heathrow decision, and Japanese car maker Nissan was reportedly given insight into the UK’s negotiating position on Brexit, what did Bernard Jenkin do?

Speeches and written questions

Bernard Jenkin spoke once in Parliament this week where he asked the Prime Minister a question about a joint ministerial meeting she had with the First Ministers of the devolved assemblies.

He asked whether the Prime Minister would “in future give oral statements to the House on meetings of that Joint Ministerial Council to emphasize the importance of those meetings?”

In the same contribution he also wanted to know whether the other administrations accepted “the principle that there should be a sub-committee looking at the particular issue of Brexit?”

Voting record

The MP for Harwich and North Essex only voted in one division this week on the matter of the crisis in Yemen.

He voted: against an Opposition motion that would have condemned the reported bombing of civilian areas and called on the Government to suspend its support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition forces in Yemen.

Mr Jenkin was loyal to the government and voted with the majority.

Select committees

None of the three select committees Mr Jenkin sits on carried out any oral evidence sessions this week.

Bernard Jenkin weekly: No.2

Week 17 October – 23 October

In a week when the third and final US Presidential debate took place, a decision on airport expansion in the UK was pushed back for at least another year, and by-elections were held in both Witney, following David Cameron’s resignation, and Batley and Spen, after the killing of Jo Cox, what did Bernard Jenkin do?

Speeches and written questions

Bernard Jenkin did not give any contributions in debates this week.

Voting record

The MP for Harwich and North Essex voted in one parliamentary division this week. He voted: against a motion put forward by SNP MP Joanna Cherry that would call on the government to ensure that all nationals from other countries in the EU who have made the UK their home retain their current rights, including the rights to live and work in the UK, should the UK exit the EU.

Mr Jenkin was loyal to the government and voted with the majority.

Select committees

The Committees which Mr Jenkin sits on did not carry out any oral evidence sessions this week.

Bernard Jenkin weekly: No.1

Week 10 October – 16 October

Firstly, welcome to the first edition of Bernard Jenkin weekly, the follow up to James Heappey weekly. Here, every week, I will summarise Bernard Jenkin MP for Harwich and North Essex’s actions in Parliament. This will include contributions and speeches made in debates, written questions submitted, any select committee hearings, and, when possible, expenses data. So, let’s get started.

In a week when Unilever briefly said it wouldn’t be providing Tesco with stock, Republican nominee for President of the United States Donald Trump was accused of sexual assault by several women, and the SNP held their party conference, what did Bernard Jenkin do?

Speeches and written questions

Bernard Jenkin spoke many times in Parliament this week, especially on the debates regarding Britain’s exit from the European Union.

His first contribution of the week came on Monday 10 October when he asked a question to the Brexit Secretary, David Davis. He wanted to make clear to Mr Davis and the rest of the House that leaving the EU meant leaving the single market and that the leave campaign had been clear on that from the start, “May I point out, as a director of Vote Leave, that it was made clear in our campaign that leaving the EU meant leaving the single market.”

Mr Jenkin also expressed his confusion at the way he sees the Remain campaign’s argument about single market membership now, “Is it not ironic that the remain campaign spent a lot of time telling us, “Oh, if you leave the EU you will have to leave the EU internal market.” Now they are all saying that there must be a way of leaving the EU and staying in the single market, even though all the EU leaders say that that is not possible.”

His next contribution in parliament came on Wednesday 12 October when he made an intervention to Keir Starmer, the Shadow Brexit Secretary. He wanted to know how Mr Starmer would vote if their was a vote in the House on invoking article 50, “This is the question that he has to answer: suppose there was a vote in this House; how would he vote? Would he vote against article 50 invocation, or in favour?”

Later in the debate he intervened while Stephen Gethins, an SNP MP, was speaking. The MP for Harwich and North Essex spoke of how Parliament and the Devolved Assemblies need to work together to answer questions about Brexit. He pointed to the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, which he chairs, and an earlier visit he had made to Scotland.

“I have already visited the Scottish Parliament with my Committee to that end, and am offering to give evidence to the Scottish Parliament on those questions and how we should address them. I hope that the dialogue he wants will be in that spirit of co-operation.”

His final contribution of the week came in the same debate when he made a point to fellow Conservative MP John Redwood about how article 50 was included in the Lisbon treaty to make it less complicated to leave the EU, “Is it not also incumbent on the Government to be mindful that article 50 was not put into the Lisbon treaty to make it less complicated to leave the European Union? If we try to include too many things under article 50 that stray into mixed competences, we will finish up with an agreement that requires unanimity?”

He added that in his view it could be beneficial for withdrawal from the EU to be done in less than the two years stated under article 50, “In fact, it would be an advantage to business if we could complete this in a much shorter period than the two years specified under the article 50 process.”

Bernard Jenkin has not submitted any written questions so far in this Parliamentary session.

Voting record

Mr Jenkin voted four times this week, including three times on the Wales Bill.

On 12 September he voted on the issues relating to the Wales Bill. He voted: against a proposed amendment that would establish two distinct legal jurisdictions of England and Wales; against a proposed clause that would remove restrictions on certain public sector bodies bidding to operate a rail franchise that is made up of or includes rail services within Wales; and against a proposed clause that would make air passenger duty a devolved tax in Wales.

On 14 September the MP for Harwich and North Essex voted once on a piece of business that came without a debate. He voted: for approving the draft West Midlands Combined Authority (Election of Mayor) Order 2016.

Mr Jenkin way loyal to his party and voted with the majority on all four votes.

Select Committees

Bernard Jenkin sits on three House of Commons Committees. He chairs the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee as well as sitting on both the Liaison Committee and the Speaker’s Committee on the Electoral Commission.

None of the committees carried out any oral evidence sessions this week.


Bernard Jenkin’s expenses records going back to 2010 are accessible on the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority website. Here I will only present the most recent data published by the IPSA, expenses for April and May of this financial year.

In April, Bernard Jenkin made 25 expenses claims, totaling £3,072.55. The data published says he did not make any expenses claims during May.

His largest claim during April was for £2,671.00 to pay for a PRU (Policy Research Unit) subscription, a scheme only open to Conservative MPs that lets them share researchers and save money as a result.

Most of his other claims were small claims to pay for travel costs within his own car. The lowest of these claims was for £0.32 to pay for a 0.7 mile journey within his own constituency.

All of Mr Jenkin’s claims were paid in full and none have had to be repaid to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority.

James Heappey weekly: No.21


Week 19 September – 25 September

In a week when Jeremy Corbyn was re-elected leader of the Labour Party, Tim Farron gave his speech at the Lib Dem party conference, and the latest ceasefire in Syria collapsed, what did James Heappey do?

Well, he didn’t do anything. There haven’t been any debates or votes to participate in for the last week, due to the start of the party conference season.

Next weekend I move to university, so this will be the last James Heappey weekly. Though I have often disagreed with Mr Heappey, I have always found him to be a hardworking local MP who cares deeply about his constituents and his party. I wish him well.

My new MP will be another Conservative, Bernard Jenkin, representing the Harwich and North Essex constituency. From 16 October I will start ‘Bernard Jenkin weekly’.