| Kevan Jones |
Worksop, Nottinghamshire, England
|Alma mater||University of Southern Maine, Newcastle Polytechnic|
Labour defence politician with safe establishment views
Kevan David Jones is a British Labour Party politician, who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Durham since 2001. He resigned as part of a 2016 front bench reshuffle by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Jones was born in Nottinghamshire and is the son of a coal miner. He attended Portland Comprehensive School in Worksop and Newcastle Polytechnic and the University of Southern Maine, gaining a BA (Hons) in Government and Public Policy. Before becoming an MP, he was a Newcastle upon Tyne councillor from 1990 to 2001 and Chairman of the Development Committee as well as an elected officer of the GMB Union.
Jones was first elected as MP for North Durham in 2001 with a majority of 18,681. After becoming member of Parliament, Jones became a member of the influential Defence Select Committee, and also a member of the Labour Party's Parliamentary Committee.
He was re-elected to the North Durham seat in the 2005 general election, with a majority of 16,781. He polled 64.1% of the vote. His campaigning on behalf of people who had coal health compensation payments deducted by unscrupulous claims handlers influenced the Compensation Act 2006.
In August 2009 he was accused of briefing against the Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Richard Dannatt, who had been an outspoken critic of the government's record on equipping troops. A series of Freedom of Information requests had been made concerning Dannat's expenses, and blogger Guido Fawkes "outed" Jones as the culprit, although he did not provide any evidence that directly connected Jones to the requests. Jones, who had tabled Parliamentary questions on Army officials' spending before becoming a minister, denied the allegations and said he had a good working relationship with Dannatt.
Jones publicly apologised to Joanna Lumley in March 2010 after he had accused her of "deathly silence" over misleading advice being given to some Gurkhas following Lumley's successful campaign to allow more Gurkhas to settle in the UK.
In May 2010 Harriet Harman appointed Jones Shadow Minister for the Armed Forces, outside the Shadow Cabinet. He retained this position under Labour leader Ed Miliband and in Jeremy Corbyn's first appointment of shadow ministers in 2015.
He became a member of the special Select Committee set up to scrutinize the Bill that became the Armed Forces Act 2011. He was also a member of the Public Bill Committee for the Defence Reform Act 2014.
In December 2015 Jones made public his strong criticism of the new Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, in particular after Corbyn opposed overt military intervention in the Syrian War. Jones stated "because of [Corbyn's] incompetence, the Tories are getting away with things that are not being properly scrutinised and the people who are suffering are the ones that we represent."
Resignation as shadow Defence Minister
In January 2016, Jones resigned as a Shadow Minister for the Armed Forces, following a reshuffle in which Jeremy Corbyn had promoted Emily Thornberry, who opposes the replacement of the Trident nuclear weapon system, to shadow Defence Secretary. In his resignation letter, Jones said he believed that the country had to "maintain a credible nuclear deterrent, while working to advance global nuclear disarmament."
- https://www.theguardian.com/politics/blog/live/2016/jan/06/labour-reshuffle-mcfadden-says-he-was-sacked-for-criticising-apologists-for-terrorism-live |