Calls for Mansfield MP Bradley to quit after ‘unemployed vasectomies’ blunder

Ben Bradley, Conservative MP for Mansfield.
Ben Bradley, Conservative MP for Mansfield.

Mansfield MP Ben Bradley has apologised for a blog post slamming “unemployed wasters” and claiming benefit claimants should have vasectomies.

Mr Bradley, who became Mansfield’s first Conservative MP, had been writing in support of the benefits cap on the personal blog in 2012.

Mr Bradley on the front page of today's Daily Mirror.

Mr Bradley on the front page of today's Daily Mirror.

He wrote: “Sorry but how many children you have is a choice; if you can’t afford them, stop having them! Vasectomies are free.

“Families who have never worked a day in their lives having four or five kids and the rest of us having one or two means it’s not long before we’re drowning in a vast sea of unemployed wasters that we pay to keep!”

After they were highlighted by US internet media company Buzzfeed, Mr Bradley, who was appointed Tory vice-chairman for youth in Prime MInister Theresa May’s Cabinet reshuffle last week, said: “I apologise for these posts. My time in politics has allowed me to mature and I now realise that this language is not appropriate.”

Apologising, he said he had matured since writing the now-deleted remarks, which were highlighted by Buzzfeed.

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Labour attacked him over the “repulsive comments”.

Cat Smith, Labour’s shadow minister for youth affairs, said: “These repulsive comments expose the Tories’ disgraceful attitude to unemployed people.

“That they come from a man Mrs May chose as a vice-chairman of her party speaks volumes. The nasty party is alive and well.”

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran said it “beggars belief that someone who has shown such contempt for young people who are out of work has been tasked by the prime minister to improve her party’s appeal with young voters”.

It is the second time in a week Mr Bradley has come under fire for his comments.

Following a joke on Twitter about watching porn in his office – adding #onlyjoking – Councillor Lauren Mitchell, Ashfield District Council member for Hucknall south, called the comments “childish”.

Mr Bradley, also a Nottinghamshire County Council member for Hucknall, posted the comments in a series of tweets between him and fellow MP Paul Masterson about the reshuffle – sparked after Secretary of State Damian Green was sacked after admitting he lied about the presence of pornographic images on his House of Commons computer.

Coun Mitchell said: “It is inappropriate, particularly in the current climate.

“He’s been an MP throughout the time of the sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour in Westminister. You just have to think if this was any other role, they would be in big trouble.”

“I don’t think its funny and I don’t think a lot of young women will find it funny.”

Mr Bradley has been asked for his views.

Speaking about Mr Bradley’s latest outburst, Mansfield Labour Parliamentary hopeful David Prescott said: “The people Mansfield will be thoroughly disgusted by these comments from their MP.

“Mansfield needs an MP whose going to help the unemployed back into work by bringing in jobs and investment this town, not make fun of them.

“Ben Bradley said when he was made Vice Chair of the Conservative Party that he wanted to fix their image problem. Instead he’s proved they’re still the nasty party.

“Mansfield deserves a lot better.”