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Thursday, 17 October, 2002, 09:21 GMT 10:21 UK
Desmond Swayne
Desmond Swayne

Date of birth

20 August 1956

Political profile

Desmond Swayne was elected for the safe Conservative seat on New Forest West in 1997.

He made an immediate impact in the Commons with his passionate contributions to debates.

His speeches and frequent comic interjections from the backbenches often demonstrated his right-wing Euroscepticism.

Mr Swayne is on the right of the party and, as one of the most religiously minded MPs, is a consistent advocate of traditional family values.

He caused controversy when he was single-handedly responsible for wrecking the Commons progress of a Bill on putting deceased fathers' names on birth certificates.

He was a surprise appointment to the front bench as a health spokesman shortly before the 2001 election.

Later, Mr Swayne was made a defence spokesman by Iain Duncan Smith, whose leadership bid he had supported from the outset.

But he had to give up that role when his role as a Major in the Territorial Army meant he served in Iraq for six months in 2003.

He became one of Tory leader Michael Howard's two parliamentary private secretaries.

Contact

Commons office: 0207 219 4886
Constituency office: 01424 629844

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