Tory eurosceptic MP clinches PAC chair

The committee, which scrutinises the spending of public money by Whitehall departments, was chaired by David Davis who left first to run as a candidate in the Tory leadership election and then to become the party’s chairman.

Leigh, a barrister, is known as a eurosceptic and was sacked by John Major for disoyalty. He is pro fox hunting and opposes CND, the EU, divorce and abortion.

After working in Margaret Thatcher’s private office from 1976/77 Leigh was elected MP for Gainsborough in the 1983 general election.

From 1990/93 he was parliamentary under secretary of state at trade and industry after being parliamentary private secretary at the Home Office.

The chairmanship of the committee, arguably the most powerful in the Commons, is given to the most senior opposition member of the committee and has never been the subject of disagreement.

Until his most recent appointment, Leigh was a member of the social security select committee, and joint vice-chairman of the Conservative Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee.


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