Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake brands Lord Rennard 'disappointing' over failure to apologise
One of Sutton's Liberal Democrat MPs has called controversial peer Lord Chris Rennard's refusal to apologise to women he was accused of harassing "disappointing".
Four female Lib Dems accused Lord Rennard, a prominent peer credited with playing a major part in the rise of the party over the last decade, of sexually harassing them but an independent investigation into the claims concluded the allegations could not be proved beyond reasonable doubt.
But the report, penned by Alistair Webster QC, did describe the women's complaints as "broadly credible" and urged Lord Rennard to apologise to the complainants.
Party leader and deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg backed the calls for Lord Rennard to apologise but he refused and is now believed to be considering legal action after having his party membership suspended.
Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake said he has been asked for his thoughts on the situation by a lot of people so used Facebook to make his feelings known.
He said: "It is disappointing that Chris Rennard failed to [apologise]. As a result the Regional Parties Committee has suspended Chris Rennard's membership whilst they consider whether his actions have brought the Liberal Democrats into disrepute.
"I believe my party should be open to all, without fear of sexual harassment. I am glad to see that Tim Farron (Party President) and Nick Clegg are looking into the processes we have in our party, that failed the women concerned."
Sutton and Cheam MP Paul Burstow was implicated in the scandal. He was the party's Chief Whip when some of the allegations took place in 2007, making him the first port of call for complaints.
Two of the four women to make allegations against Lord Rennard went to Mr Burstow at the time but he failed to take their complaints further.
He has since expressed "deep regret" for his "lapse of judgement" on the matter.
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