By-election could be triggered after Blackpool South MP Commons suspension

Parliament has approved a 35-day suspension for Scott Benton, which could trigger a by-election in the Blackpool South constituency.

Mr Benton has been suspended from the Commons for 35 days over his role in a lobbying sting by a national newspaper.

MPs approved the suspension of Mr Benton on Tuesday evening without the need for a vote, meaning he will now face a recall petition in his constituency of Blackpool South.

If ten percent of constituents vote for it, a by-election would be called.

Mr Benton had the Tory whip removed last April after suggesting to undercover reporters at The Times that he would be willing to break lobbying rules for money.

An investigation by parliament's Standards Committee recommended a 35-day suspension from the Commons.

The MP, who was elected in 2019, has sat as an independent since being kicked out of the Conservative Party. He had denied wrongdoing and appealed the suspension to the Independent Expert Panel, which failed.

Mr Benton is yet to publicly comment on the suspension.

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