Ben Bradley: The MP under fire for online comments whose career started with a bin problem

Ben Bradley: The MP under fire for online comments whose career started with a bin problem

Ben Bradley has been criticised for a blog post (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

MP Ben Bradley is the latest public figure to come under fire for past comments made online, but he's had a rather interesting journey to get this far.

Bradley has been criticised over a blog post he wrote in 2012 where he suggested those who claim benefits should have vasectomies so other taxpayers don't have to pay to provide for their children.

His post has now been deleted, after Buzzfeed highlighted the matter. The Tory MP has also apologised and said "my time in politics has allowed me to mature and I now realise that this language is not appropriate."

It was only last week that the 28-year-old was appointed as the Conservatives vice-chair for youth, which is a new job role.

When he was given the role, Bradley said he wanted to change the image of "the stereotypical Tory MP, who is this old, grey bloke."

Despite his new role, he previously voted against bringing back the Education Maintenance Allowance as well as removing tuition fees. He's also said that he was a "reluctant Remainer" but is now a "confident Brexiteer."

Bradley was only elected as an MP last year, representing Mansfield. Prior to this he attended the University of Bath and the University of Salford, but graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2013.

He also previously worked as a landscape gardener, a bartender, a recruitment consultant and in Aldi as a shelf stacker, showing a less typical route into politics.

What makes his arrival to politics even more unusual is he claims it all started with a bin problem. He said he started a dispute with his local council over bin collections and it was this that made him want to get involved in local issues, firstly by becoming a councillor. Whilst in this role he also ran MP Mark Spencer's office.

When his victory as an MP was announced, acting returning officer at the Mansfield count Jacqueline Collins unfortunately said Labour candidate Alan Meale had won, before realising her error and announcing the real winner was in fact Bradley. It was dubbed the "Oscars moment" of the General Election.

In his first speech in Parliament he called for a coal mining museum to be opened in Mansfield and said more must be done to rejuvenate local high streets, as many shops lie empty.

Plus Bradley has stole some of Jeremy Corbyn's glory last year, albeit in a battle of the beards. He's the first Tory to win Parliamentary Beard Of The Year by himself, as previously Tories have had to settle for joint winner awards with Labour counterparts.

However, Corbyn was disbarred from entering in 2017 as he has previously won seven times, and other MPs wanted a chance, so it's hard to say who'd win if they went up against each other.