|The Right Honourable|
Simon Hughes MP
|Assumed office |
24 February 1983
|Preceded by||Bob Mellish (Bermondsey constituency)|
|Majority||5,406 (14. The Right Honourable (abbreviated as The Rt Hon) is an Honorific prefix that is traditionally applied to certain A Member of Parliament, or MP, is a representative elected by the voters to a Parliament. The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the supreme legislative body in the United Kingdom and British overseas territories Southwark North & Bermondsey is a Parliamentary Constituency in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that was created in 1997 Events 303 - Galerius, Roman Emperor, publishes his edict that begins the persecution of Christians in his portion of the Year 1983 ( MCMLXXXIII) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1983 Gregorian calendar) Robert Joseph Mellish Baron Mellish, PC ( 3 March 1913 &ndash 9 May 1998) was a British politician Bermondsey was a Borough constituency centred on the Bermondsey district of South London. 2%)|
|Born||17 May 1951 |
|Political party||Liberal Democrats|
|Alma mater||Selwyn College, Cambridge|
Simon Henry Ward Hughes (born 17 May 1951) is a British politician and Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament for North Southwark and Bermondsey. Events 1521 - Edward Stafford 3rd Duke of Buckingham, is executed for Treason. Year 1951 ( MCMLI) was a Common year starting on Monday. Events of 1951 January The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located The Liberal Democrats, often shortened to Lib Dems, are a liberal Political party in the United Kingdom, formed in 1988 by merging the Alma mater is Latin for "nourishing mother" It was used in Ancient Rome as a title for the mother Goddess, and in Medieval Selwyn College is a College of the University of Cambridge. It was founded in memory of the Rt Revd George Augustus Selwyn (1809&ndash1878 the first Events 1521 - Edward Stafford 3rd Duke of Buckingham, is executed for Treason. Year 1951 ( MCMLI) was a Common year starting on Monday. Events of 1951 January The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located The Liberal Democrats, often shortened to Lib Dems, are a liberal Political party in the United Kingdom, formed in 1988 by merging the A Member of Parliament, or MP, is a representative elected by the voters to a Parliament. Southwark North & Bermondsey is a Parliamentary Constituency in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that was created in 1997 He is currently Liberal Democrat Shadow Leader of the House of Commons and has been President of the Liberal Democrats since September 1, 2004. Events 462 - Possible start of first Byzantine indiction cycle. "MMIV" redirects here For the Modest Mouse album see " Baron von Bullshit Rides Again " The party president chairs a number of party committees and also represents the party at official functions. He has twice run unsuccessfully for the leadership of the party and was its unsuccessful candidate for Mayor of London in the 2004 election. The Mayor of London is an elected politician who along with the London Assembly of 25 members is accountable for the strategic government of Greater London (see The 2004 election to the post of Mayor of London took place on June 10, 2004.
Hughes was born in Cheshire, England and partly brought up in Wales. Cheshire (or archaically the County of Chester) is a county in North West England. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland He attended Christ College, Brecon, Selwyn College, Cambridge where he graduated with a 2:1 in Law and the College of Europe. Christ College Brecon is a Co-educational independent boarding and day school located in the market town of Brecon, mid Wales Selwyn College is a College of the University of Cambridge. It was founded in memory of the Rt Revd George Augustus Selwyn (1809&ndash1878 the first History The origins of the College date back to the Hague Congress in 1948 when Salvador de Madariaga, a Spanish statesman thinker and writer Hughes was called to the bar (Inner Temple) in 1974. A bar association is a Professional body of Lawyers Some bar associations are responsible for the regulation of the legal profession in their Jurisdiction The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple is one of the four Inns of Court around the Royal Courts of Justice in London which may call members to He moved to Bermondsey in 1981. Bermondsey (ˈbɜːmənzi or /ˈbɜːməndzi/ is an area in modern London on the southern bank of the river Thames, and presently part of the London Borough Year 1981 ( MCMLXXXI) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link displays the 1981
Hughes was first elected to Parliament in the Bermondsey by-election of February 24, 1983. A by-election was held in the Bermondsey constituency in South London, on 24 February 1983, after the resignation of Labour Events 303 - Galerius, Roman Emperor, publishes his edict that begins the persecution of Christians in his portion of the Year 1983 ( MCMLXXXIII) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1983 Gregorian calendar) The byelection was described by Gay News as "the dirtiest and most notorious byelection in British political history" because of the slurs against the character of the Labour candidate and gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell by various opposition campaigners. Gay News was a pioneering fortnightly newspaper in the United Kingdom founded in June 1972 in a collaboration between the Gay Liberation Front The Labour Party is a Political party in the United Kingdom. Founded at the start of the 20th century it has been since the 1920s the principal party of the Peter Gary Tatchell (born 25 January 1952) is an Australian born British Human rights activist who gained international celebrity The Liberal Campaign leaflet described the election as a "straight choice", a standard campaigning slogan which was unfortunately open to misinterpretation. Hughes won the seat with 57. 7% of the vote. He apologised for the campaign in 2006 during the same few days that he revealed his own homosexual experiences and said that he is in fact bisexual.  Mr Hughes told the BBC's Newsnight programme: "I hope that there will never be that sort of campaign again. I have never been comfortable about the whole of that campaign, as Peter knows, and I said that to him in the past . . . Where there were things that were inappropriate or wrong, I apologise for that. "
In an apparent attempt to bring the controversy over the 1983 Bermondsey byelection to a close, Peter Tatchell formally endorsed Simon Hughes for Lib Dem leader on 25th January 2006, saying:
"Simon Hughes is the best of the Lib Dem leadership candidates. If I was a party member, he'd get my vote. I want to see a stronger lead on social justice and green issues. Despite his recent drift to the centre, Simon is the contender most likely to move the Liberal Democrats in a progressive direction. "
In the same statement, Tatchell added: "Since his election, Simon has redeemed himself by voting for gay equality. That's all that matters now. He should be judged on his policies, not his private life. 
The election result in North Southwark & Bermondsey in the 2005 general election was a poorer one for Hughes than those he had achieved in previous battles. Southwark North & Bermondsey is a Parliamentary Constituency in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that was created in 1997 He held the seat, but the Labour Party saw a 5. 9% swing in their favour — the biggest swing to Labour anywhere in the UK. When interviewed on election night television by Jeremy Paxman, Hughes suggested that the fall in his vote might reflect the unpopularity of Southwark Borough Council, which has been controlled by the Liberal Democrats since 2002. The London Borough of Southwark ( is a London borough in south east London, England. See also 2002 (disambiguation Year 2002 ( MMII) was a Common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar.
As part of the SDP-Liberal Alliance, Hughes was spokesman for the environment from 1983 to 1988. The SDP-Liberal Alliance was an electoral alliance of the Social Democratic Party (SDP and the Liberal Party in the United Kingdom that operated Year 1983 ( MCMLXXXIII) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1983 Gregorian calendar) Year 1988 ( MCMLXXXVIII) was a Leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar) Along with the majority of Liberals, he joined the newly founded Liberal Democrats in 1988, acting as spokesman for education until 1992, then the environment again until 1994, then health until 1997, and then home affairs until 2003. The Liberal Party was one of the two major British political parties from the early 19th century until the rise of the Labour Party in the 1920s and a third party The Liberal Democrats, often shortened to Lib Dems, are a liberal Political party in the United Kingdom, formed in 1988 by merging the Year 1988 ( MCMLXXXVIII) was a Leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar) Year 1992 ( MCMXCII) was a Leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar) Year 1994 ( MCMXCIV) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link will display full 1994 Gregorian calendar) Year 1997 ( MCMXCVII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1997 Gregorian calendar Year 2003 ( MMIII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. He was the Liberal Democrat candidate in the 2004 Mayor of London elections and came in third with 15. The 2004 election to the post of Mayor of London took place on June 10, 2004. 22% of the first preference vote.
On his proudest achievement in parliament since 1997: "A young man called Jamie Robe was kicked to death in Rotherhithe in August 1998. Rotherhithe is a district of central south-east London in the London Borough of Southwark. Using my community links I helped break the wall of silence, encourage witnesses to give evidence, and secure convictions. " Hughes had to receive police protection following death threats linked to his advocacy for the family of Jamie Robe. The episode became an ITV1 drama, with actor Robin Kermode portraying Hughes.
Among other party offices, Hughes is Vice-President of the Liberal Democrat Christian Forum. The Liberal Democrat Christian Forum is an association within the Liberal Democrats that aims to promote Christianity within the party and the party to other Christians He has also stated that "the present constitutional arrangements for making English decisions are unacceptable and need to be changed" Considered to be to the Left of his party, he is a member of the centre-left Beveridge Group within the Liberal Democrats. The Beveridge Group is a centre-left Ginger group within the Liberal Democrat party in the UK
Simon Hughes was an important figure in the fight to grant a young gay man, Mehdi Kazemi, asylum so he would not be deported to his homeland of Iran, which had executed his boyfriend and almost certainly would have executed him. Mehdi Kazemi (born 1989 is a Gay Iranian who is currently wanted in Iran for Sodomy. Mehdi Kazemi thanked Hughes in a letter to people across the world who fought to save his life: "I would like to say thank you to my local MP, Mr Simon Hughes, and his team who gave me the chance to live and made a miracle happen when he heard that my life was in serious danger and asked the Home Office to suspend my deportation in December 2006. I would not be here if it hadn’t been for his intervention. He was here for me then and he was here for me again when I was eventually sent back to the UK in April this year. I do not know if I would have been granted my refugee status without him. " 
On 12 January 2006 Hughes announced his candidacy in the Leadership Election triggered by the resignation of Charles Kennedy. In the 2006 Liberal Democrats leadership election, Sir Menzies Campbell was elected to succeed Charles Kennedy as Leader of the Liberal Democrats, the third-largest Events 475 - Basiliscus becomes Byzantine Emperor, with a coronation ceremony in the Hebdomon palace in Constantinople Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. Charles Peter Kennedy (born 25 November 1959 is a British politician. He had initially delayed any announcement while carrying out Presidential responsibilities in drawing up the timetable for the contest.
Speaking to reporters he said: "What I have to offer is my ambition, enthusiasm and passion. . . . What I have to offer is my experience over many years in Parliament and campaigning around the country to motivate people to join us. " 
After revelation about Hughes' long rumoured sexuality, which came four days after Mark Oaten resigned from the Liberal Democrat front bench and gave up on the leadership race, Peter Tatchell confirmed his view that, despite the 1983 Bermondsey incidents: "I hope Simon is elected as party leader because of all the contenders he is the most progressive on human rights, social justice and environmental issues. Mark Oaten (born 8 March 1964, Watford) is a Liberal Democrat politician in the United Kingdom, and Member of Parliament In many Parliaments and other similar assemblies seating is typically arranged in banks or rows with each Political party or Caucus grouped together "
Mr Hughes apologised after his outing by The Sun, saying "I gave a reply that wasn't untrue but was clearly misleading and I apologise. In the late twentieth century outing became a common term for taking someone "out of The closet "—that is publicising that someone is Gay. The Sun is a Tabloid daily newspaper published in the United Kingdom and Ireland with the highest circulation of any daily English-language ". He also admitted during the Question Time leadership candidate debate on BBC1 on 9 February that he hadn't handled the matter very well. Question Time is a topical Debate Television programme in the United Kingdom, based on Any Questions?. Events 474 - Zeno crowned as co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire.  Andreas Whittam Smith characterized Mr Hughes as a "shameless liar," and said he profoundly hoped that he will fail in his attempt to lead the Liberal Democrats. Andreas Whittam Smith CBE (born 13 June, 1937, in Birkenhead, Cheshire) is a British financial Journalist, 
Simon Hughes campaigned under the rubric of 'Freedom, fairness and sustainability. A rubric is a word or section of text which is written or printed in Red Ink to highlight it ' His manifesto was also released in pdf format, and was available from his campaign website. For the Roxy Music album see Manifesto (album. A manifesto is a public declaration of principles and intentions often A website (alternatively web site or Web site, a back-construction from the Proper noun World Wide Web) is a collection of Web pages Of the three candidates in the contest, he was generally considered the most leftwing. For example, he said in his manifesto that "Britain has become less, not more fair, in recent years. Few people would have expected the Tories to deliver a fair society. But more might have hoped that a Labour government would deliver fairness. The reality has been bitterly disappointing. Inequalities in health have increased under Labour, not decreased. "
The campaign was marked by a series of hustings around the UK. This timeline of events in the Liberal Democrats leadership election 2006 lists the events covering the period from Charles Kennedy 's initial call for a leadership election A husting, or the hustings, was originally a physical platform from which representatives presented their views or cast votes before a parliamentary or other election body The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located One was held in Edinburgh where Hughes stressed his human rights and Green friendly background; another in Manchester, where Chris Huhne rebutted criticism from Sir Menzies Campbell that his call for a hike in petrol duty would harm people living in rural areas dependent on using their cars. Edinburgh ( ˈɛdɪnb(ərə Dùn Èideann) is the Capital of Scotland and is its second largest city after Glasgow. Human rights refers to the "basic Rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled Green politics is a Political ideology which places a high importance on ecological and environmental goals and on achieving these goals through broad-based Christopher Murray Paul Huhne, known as Chris Huhne, (born 2 July 1954 is a British Liberal Democrat politician and the current Member of Parliament Sir Walter Menzies Campbell CBE QC (born 22 May 1941) commonly known as Ming Campbell, is a British Politician A fuel tax (also known as a petrol tax, gasoline tax, gas tax or fuel duty) is a Sales tax imposed on the sale of Fuel. The final hustings was held in London on 23 February 2006. A husting, or the hustings, was originally a physical platform from which representatives presented their views or cast votes before a parliamentary or other election body London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom. Events 1455 - Traditional date for the publication of the Gutenberg Bible, the first Western Book printed from Movable Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar.
He said he was proud to have played some part in the success of the LibDems across the country. 
In the final result, Hughes came third in the ballot of party members - with 12,081 votes - behind Campbell and Huhne.
In the autumn of 2007, as speculation over Ming Campbell's leadership continued, Simon Hughes publicly criticised him in a GMTV interview, stating he must do better. GMTV ( Good Morning Television) is the national ITV Breakfast television contractor broadcasting in the United Kingdom. 
Outside politics Hughes is a noted supporter of Millwall football club, which is based in his constituency. Millwall Football Club are an English professional football team based at The New Den, referred to by fans as The Den in Bermondsey, Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a Team sport played between two teams of eleven players and is widely considered He also enjoys theatre, and is an active Christian. A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, a monotheistic Religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth One of his elder brothers died of malaria.
Hughes has never married, although in an interview with The Daily Telegraph in 2006, he said he had been turned down by 'several women'. For "The Daily Telegraph" in Australia see The Daily Telegraph (Australia. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. He also denied persistent rumours about his sexuality, when asked if he was gay, saying "The answer is no, as it happens, but if it were the case, which it isn't, I hope that it would not be an issue. " Two days later, in an interview with The Independent he again denied that he was gay, and later in an interview with The Guardian he repeated the denial
However, on January 26, 2006, after The Sun newspaper told him that they had proof that he had used a gay chat service known as 'Man Talk' Hughes admitted that in the past he had had relationships with both women and men. The Independent is a British compact Newspaper published by Tony O'Reilly 's Independent News & Media. The Guardian (until 1959 The Manchester Guardian) is a British Newspaper owned by the Guardian Media Group. Events 1340 - King Edward III of England is declared King of France. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar.  He said he had revealed the truth when it became apparent that not doing so was not stopping rumours '[I] was overly defensive last week. That was a mistake. I did it and I was trying to make sure that even in the circumstances of potentially standing as leader of the party — or for high office — that private life was private. It was clear even afterwards that the question from colleagues and the Press and elsewhere was not going to go away. ' He said his sexuality should not prevent him becoming leader, saying, "It would be very sad if people who have always been single or who are homosexual felt that their sexuality prevented them from holding high office. I hope that my party and the great majority of the British public would agree with that. "
"It is not just me. There are lots of people who have tried to keep their private lives private. I wasn’t just doing it for me but for many others who are in the same boat," said Mr Hughes.
Referring to his change from previous denials about his sexuality and recent Liberal Democrat difficulties he said, "I hope that any colleague in any party at any time who might not have been entirely honest for good reason or who may have made a mistake is accepted back at the right time. " and also "I gave a reply that wasn't untrue but was clearly misleading. I apologise. " He confirmed to PinkNews that he is bisexual. Bisexuality refers to sexual behavior with or attraction to people of both sexes or to a bisexual orientation 
In an interview broadcast on the same day on BBC Radio 5 Live, he was asked if he considered quitting the race for leadership of his party, he replied: “Of course. BBC Radio 5 was for three years and eight months a BBC Radio network that carried sports children's and educational programmes I considered also whether I should stand in the first place. It is a balance I have always had to take. "