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‘Porn MP’ Neil Parish could stand against Conservatives in by-election

By Lizzy Buchan

"Porn MP" Neil Parish has threatened to run as an independent candidate in a by-election in his old seat.

The disgraced politician was forced to quit last month after he admitted to watching pornography on his phone in the Commons chamber.

Mr Parish claimed he had accidentally stumbled upon the X-rated videos while searching for farm machinery, before doing so deliberately a second time.

Allies claimed the former farmer may have been looking for a brand of combine harvester, known as a Dominator.

His resignation triggered a by-election in his Tiverton and Honiton constituency, which has been Conservative since it was created in 1997.

Tory MP Neil Parish stands on a Dominator combine harvester (Facebook)

But Mr Parish has now suggested he could run again as an independent candidate, against his former party.

"It is an option for me and one I could consider, the only thing that may well stop me is the fact that my local party, my local activists, my local councillors, all which are friends, I don't know if I want to do that to them," Mr Parish told the Telegraph's Chopper's Politics podcast.

"Some of the hierarchy of my own party I suppose I wouldn't have the same problem in doing it. At the moment I'm taking soundings. I can raise the money, yeah, yeah.

"I don't think I would have any problem in doing all that. I've got some quite powerful backers in the farming community.

"I don't think I'm going there - but it is an option."

The move could risk splitting the Tory vote and handing victory to the Liberal Democrats who are eying the seat.

Mr Parish said he wanted to take some time to "let the shock of what I've done pass" and would probably breed some more cattle and puppies.

Neil Parish admitted to watching porn in the Commons (Tom Wren SWNS)

"I'll breed some more cattle, probably Herefords or Devons, my wife and I are talking about we're great dog lovers so we might breed a few puppies."

But he sought to defend his record amid allegations of misogyny in Westminster.

"One ridiculous point from me to get myself into this situation is if you ask people, you'll find no friendlier and nicer MP," the former chair of the the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs Select Committee said.

"I never accosted women, I never suggested anything - I might have jokes with them, but that's all."

The Mirror revealed that an outraged female minister complained to a meeting of Tory MPs about seeing an unnamed MP watching porn on his phone.

Mr Parish was eventually revealed to be the MP in question.

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Dive Deeper:
Neil Parish won’t rule out running in by-election after tractor porn resignation
The former Conservative MP was considering using his support in the farming community to stand as an independent in Tiverton…
Former MP Neil Parish could stand in by-election triggered by own resignation
‘I will decide before nominations close,’ ex-MP says
Neil Parish hints he could run in by-election triggered by his own resignation
DISGRACED politician Neil Parish has not ruled out running against his old colleagues in the Tory party in the by-election…
Ex-MP who watched porn in Parliament says he may run for re-election
Neil Parish said he first found the video while searching for tractors
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Top Tory risks fury in own party by saying unsuitable MPs were elected in 2017 and 2019
Commons leader Mark Spencer promised a higher calibre of MPs would be elected in 2024 because there's more time to…
Conservatives admit they failed to do enough to weed out rogue MPs after scandals
Tories pledge to take ‘much more time to scrutinise people’ for the next election
Get all your news in one place