Vandals have daubed graffiti across the constituency office of a North Wales Tory MP after he voted to stopfrom being suspended.
The words ‘corrupt scum’ have been spray-painted in red across the windows outside the building on Princes Drive, Colwyn Bay, where Clwyd West MP David Jones is based.
It comes after Prime Ministerwhipped his MPs to support an amendment not to suspend North Shropshire Tory, Owen Paterson, after he was found guilty of paid lobbying by a standards watchdog.
Mr Jones, from Rhos on Sea, who has represented Clwyd West since 2005, voted in favour of putting aside Paterson’s suspension and reviewing the standards system.
The plans provoked an immediate outcry and were immediately plunged into chaos when Labour, the SNP and Liberal Democrats vowed to boycott a proposed committee the Tories wanted to set-up.
Downing Street performed a humiliating U-turn on Thursday, less than 24 hours later and Mr Paterson, who lost his wife to suicide, resigned.
The graffiti on his office in Colwyn Bay saw ‘corrupt scum’ painted in red over the weekend
MP David Jones’ constituency office was targeted by vandals who struck in the past two days
MP Mr Jones voted to put aside Owen Paterson’s suspension and review standard system
Ever since the Government has been facing accusations of acting corruptly.
The graffiti attack on Mr Jones’ offices also damaged a grief counselling charity, Cruse Bereavement, which is next door.
Mr Jones declined to comment.
Boris Johnson’s (left) abortive bid to save ally Owen Paterson (right) from lobbying punishment will come under fresh fire in the Commons this afternoon
Sir Lindsay Hoyle is expected to lay down a marker about his determination to protect the integrity of parliament later
Settling old scores? PM’s years of clashes with sleaze watchdog Kathryn Stone
The debacle over the Owen Paterson report was far from the first time Boris Johnson has clashed with Commons standards commissioner Kathryn Stone.
And their relationship is unlikely to get easier, as he could face another probe by the watchdog into the ‘Wallpapergate’ controversy over refurbishment of his grace-and-favour flat – as well as his refusal to declare his recent ‘freebie’ Marbella holiday on the parliamentary register .
Ms Stone has previously castigated the Prime Minister over a lavish £15,000 Caribbean holiday funded by Tory donors.
But he was saved from punishment – which could have included being the first serving premier to be suspended from the Commons, by MPs who overturned her ruling.
She has also pulled him up over an ‘over-casual attitude’ to declaring his own personal financial interests to Parliament, including a six-figure stake in an English country mansion.
Mr Johnsonwas dramatically cleared in the summer of breaking Commons rules over a ‘freebie’ trip to the millionaire’s playground of Mustique with Carrie – despite Ms Stone condemning his behaviour and the ‘unusual’ arrangements.
The cross-party Standards Committee found the PM had made an ‘accurate and complete’ declaration about the holiday in December 2019, saying it was a donation from Carphone Warehouse founder David Ross even though the couple did not stay in his villa.
The committee – chaired by Labour MP Chris Bryant – overruled Ms Stone after she concluded that Mr Johnson did breach the Code of Conduct for MPs during a 15-month wrangle after initially failing to provide a full explanation, slamming him for ‘not showing the accountability required of those in public life’.
The report also suggested that the premier himself did not know exactly how the jaunt was being funded until after he arrived on Mustique and realised he was not staying in Mr Ross’s own property.
Ms Stone has revealed she will consider whether to launch an investigation into Mr Johnson’s conduct when Tory donors initially part-funded the lavish overhaul of his residence above No11 Downing Street.
A decision will be made once the ongoing Electoral Commission probe is complete.
Mr Johnson is also facing a backlash over refusing to declare his recent holiday to Lord Goldsmith’s luxury villa near Marbella on the Commons register.
The decision to use the ministerial register, which means he does not have to disclose the value of the gift, could be a further flashpoint with Ms Stone.
One Commons source told MailOnline that as the villa is owned by the Goldsmith family it cannot be treated solely as a gift from Lord Goldsmith – which could torpedo No10’s arguments against putting it on the MP register.
The Westminster sleaze row continues to grow and ministers have been accused of ‘not getting it’ after trying to dismiss the scandal as a ‘storm in a teacup’.
In an emergency three-hour Commons debate today, MPs will ramp up pressure on Boris Johnson to rule out a peerage for Mr Paterson and to launch an investigation into £600million of Covid contracts awarded to one of the firms he worked for.
It is thought Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle could announce a review of standards later today.
Mr Paterson stepped down as an MP last week after ministers were forced to abandon efforts to save him.
In a humiliating U-turn, Mr Johnson dropped a bid to prevent Mr Paterson being suspended from Parliament for lobbying on behalf of two firms which paid him more than £500,000.
He resigned hours later, saying he wanted to leave behind the ‘cruel world of politics’.
But it has emerged Mr Paterson, a former Cabinet minister, will be able to retain access to the Commons as he is entitled to apply for a so-called ‘category X’ pass for former parliamentarians.
Some 283 ex-MPs possess the cards which give them continued entry, including to Parliament’s restaurants and bars, without being required to register their financial interests as sitting MPs and peers must. But they are barred from lobbying under Commons rules.
Current passholders include Sir Michael Fallon, the former defence secretary who is deputy chairman of an oil firm.
Michael Dugher, a former Labour MP who is chief executive of the gambling industry body the Betting and Gaming Council, and Sir Nick Clegg, the former deputy prime minister who works at Facebook, also have them.
It comes as Mr Johnson faced fresh anger from Tory MPs last night after Environment Secretary George Eustice claimed on Sky News that the row over Mr Paterson was a ‘storm in a teacup’.
The minister’s comments were branded ‘unhelpful’ and ‘complete nonsense’ in a sign of the anger on the Conservative Party benches.
Tory former minister Tobias Ellwood also underlined how serious the row was, telling the BBC: ‘We should not deny that this was a dark week for British democracy.’
And Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner said: ‘Even after this past week Boris Johnson and his ministers still don’t get it.
‘They are so out of touch they still don’t think they’ve done anything wrong and they still think the rules don’t apply to them.’
Ahead of today’s Commons debate, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer last night called on Mr Johnson to ‘answer, apologise and act’ over the scandal. And to confirm that Mr Paterson won’t be given a peerage.
And he will call for Mr Johnson to ‘commit to a full, transparent investigation into the more than £600million of taxpayer money handed without competition or tender to Randox’, one of the firms Mr Paterson worked for.
A Downing Street source last night said a peerage was ‘not on the cards’ for Mr Paterson, after Mr Eustice earlier insisted it was ‘highly unlikely’.
And a close friend of Mr Paterson said last night a peerage had not been ‘mentioned, offered or sought’.
They insisted that he did not plan to apply for a Commons pass.
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