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June 26, 2006

Bob Neill

That interesting little story about Bob Neill, the Tory candidate in the Bromley and Chiselhurst by election, as reported by Recess Monkey, has made it into the papers.

The Telegraph:

The by-election campaign for a safe Conservative seat was thrown into confusion last night after claims that the Tories' candidate was ineligible to stand.

Bob Neill, the Tory hopeful for Bromley and Chislehurst, confirmed that he was a £5,000-a-year member of the north-east London strategic health authority. Under the House of Commons' Disqualification Act 1975, membership of a such an authority is one of dozens of posts that MPs are not allowed to hold.

But Mr Neill said the disqualification provisions were not relevant because the health authority was due to be abolished on Friday, a day after the by-election.

Modesty forbids me from mentioning who exactly passed this on to UKIP and thus to theTelegraph.

But interesting don’t you think? A "holder of office for profit under the Crown" cannot be an MP (as with the Chiltern Hundreds) and whatever the truth about the Health Authority being abolished, Bob was indeed such a holder on the day he signed his nomination forms stating that he was eligible to stand.

Interesting, don’t you think?

June 26, 2006 in Politics | Permalink


I don't think it has legs. Firstly he has what he "believed" as a defence - if you read the declaration that is what he swore to.
Secondly I'm sure a decent barrister could quickly run up a defence along the lines of a Motorist signing that he was fit to drive a car with him actually wearing his driving glasses at the time - I think it would be quite reasonable for him to claim that he knew he wouldn't be in an disqualifying job by the time he could become an MP, just as motorist would say he would put on his glasses before he drove off.

Posted by: The Englishman | Jun 26, 2006 12:34:57 PM