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Watson offers no apology for handling of Brittan claims

Labour deputy leader Tom Watson has defended his decision to pass on sex abuse claims against former home secretary Leon Brittan and urged all MPs to "examine their consciences" over the handling of such allegations.

Prime Minister David Cameron earlier said Mr Watson had "a lot of questions to answer" and should "examine his conscience" after Lord Brittan's brother called on him for an apology.

Tom Watson said all MPs needed to examine their consciences over the handling of sex abuse allegations.

Responding with a statement in the House of Commons, Mr Watson said: "We all need to examine our consciences in this house."

He added: "We've presided over a state of affairs where children have been abused and then ignored, dismissed and then disdained. If anyone deserves an apology, it's them."

Lord Brittan's brother Sir Samuel Brittan has condemned the West Bromwich East MP for passing "unfounded allegations" from a number of alleged victims to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Tom Watson admits he 'stunk up the joint' at Open

Tom Watson offered a scathing assessment of his opening round of 76 in his final appearance in the Open Championship on Thursday.

Watson wasn't impressed with his opening round. Credit: PA

The 65-year-old five-time champion recovered from hitting his approach to the first into the Swilcan Burn with birdies on the sixth, ninth and 10th, but carded double bogeys on the 13th, 16th and 17th to come home in 41.

"I stunk up the joint today the way I played," said the former Ryder Cup captain, who announced on Wednesday that next year's Masters will also be his last.

"Too many sixes on the back nine ruined my day. I had a little string of birdies going but made some unforced errors coming in... a little bit of brilliance but a bit of ugliness averaged it out.

"When I got it to a couple under par I knew the back nine was going to play a little tougher into the wind and I knew I had to hit some quality shots, and I didn't. That was the disappointment. I didn't follow up some of the good shots I hit in the middle of the round and finish the deal. I failed."

Watson: Napier should 'spill the beans' on former friends

MP Tom Watson has called for Charles Napier to "spill the beans" on his former contacts at the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) - a shady group that campaigned to abolish the age of consent in the 1970s.

Watson, who has been instrumental in launching Operation Fairbank, said in a statement today:

Charles Napier is a lifelong predatory paedophile who ruined the lives of the children he abused ... As part of Napier’s mitigation the trial judge was told that he now accepted that what he did as a young man was wrong.

I doubt he really does have remorse for his crimes but if he does, he can start to put matters right by spilling the beans on his former friends in PIE.

Did he have contact with any of the powerful child abusers in politics, the intelligence service, the police or the church?

– tom watson mp


Cross-party support for Mitchell to return to Cabinet

Senior MPs on both sides of the green benches for Andrew Mitchell to be reappointed to the Cabinet after a police officer admitting to falsely claiming to have witnessed the 'plebgate' row between the former Chief Whip and officers:

MP 'voted the wrong way' on issue he campaigned for

The result was a Government victory of 322 to 231, a comfortable majority of 91. Credit: PA

Prominent Labour MP Tom Watson has admitted to an "embarrassing mistake" tonight after voting the wrong way on changes to rules surrounding Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) - an issue he had personally led a campaign on.

In a blog post after the result, Mr Watson admitted this was the worst time to make such a mistake - but insisted it was "bound to happen" at some point in his Commons career.

He said: "I voted the wrong way as my head said put the cross in the 'no' box but my hand put the cross in the 'yes' box.

"On most days few would notice this act of tiny rebellion. Except this was the day in which I made the front page of the Daily Mail, leading the campaign against FOBTs.

Mr Watson was initially even more shocked after first thinking the vote had been lost by only one vote - joking he almost "jumped in the Thames".

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