Conservative Lee Anderson broke the parliamentary code of conduct by filming a GB News clip on the roof of the House of Commons, an investigation has heard.
The party vice-president and MP for Ashfield used Parliament Square and Whitehall as the backdrop for an advert promoting his show with the broadcaster, asking viewers to contact us and voice their issues for a chance to appear there.
Paid £100,000 a year for the show – which includes eight hours of work a week – The Real World of Lee Anderson presents itself as bringing the “real world to the general British public”, claiming to enable the “silent majority” to “make their voices heard”.
Daniel Greenberg, the parliamentary standards commissioner, launched an investigation on July 6 following media reports that Mr Anderson had filmed advertising for his program on parliamentary grounds without permission.
On July 24, he received a complaint that the MP had also used his parliamentary email address to distribute a newsletter to his constituents promoting the same program.
During the investigation, Mr. Anderson allegedly “admitted that he had not requested permission to film on parliamentary grounds, apologized and took responsibility for his decision,” describes the summary published on the British Parliament website.
Mr Anderson sought to justify sending the newsletter, claiming it “was sent from an email distribution platform for which he had paid personally”, after using his parliamentary email address when the first time he created his account and “forgot to modify it”. .
But Mr. Greenberg rejected that claim and concluded that filming and sending the newsletter was a violation of the rules.
“I discovered that by filming commercially on Parliamentary Estate 30 without permission and sending a newsletter which appeared to come from a parliamentary email address and included an advertisement for his television program on the GB News channel, Mr. Anderson had violated Rule 8 of the Code of Conduct,” Mr. Greenberg said.
“Mr. Anderson accepted my decision, acknowledged that the violations occurred, apologized, and committed to ensuring that such violations would not occur again.”
Mr Anderson first launched the show in June by spoon-feeding fellow Tory MP Brendan Clarke-Smith with baked beans, naming him “wokey of the week” and portraying him as a “token leftist”. former Labor MP Simon Danczuk who was suspended after reports he sent inappropriate text messages to a teenage girl.
A former Labor councilor before turning to the Conservatives, Mr Anderson is known for his controversial comments, having previously called for the return of the death penalty and claimed that people on Universal Credit were not in poverty.
He was also dubbed “30p Lee” for claiming meals could be prepared for that amount of money, suggesting people using food banks couldn’t budget.