Martin Lewis has revealed that his attempts to move into politics was recently turned down after he applied to become a member of the House of Lords. And the MoneySavingExpert.com founder thinks he was rejected for doing a ‘silly thing’.
He has been repeatedly praised in recent months after he became increasingly vocal on behalf of consumers and financially stretched households, amid surging inflation and the cost-of-living crisis. Back in March, Martin was branded a ‘saviour’ after he hosted a historic episode of Good Morning Britain.
The 50-year-old money expert returned to the helm of the show and spent a chunk of the ITV news programme taking viewers’ questions as well as dishing out his best advice as millions prepared for some of the biggest price hikes in more than a decade ahead of the energy price cap which was introduced on April 1.
Now, in an interview with the BBC’s Political Thinking podcast, Martin expressed his desire for “more consensual, co-operative politics”. He told the podcast, hosted by Nick Robinson, that he was a member of the Liberal Democrats until the age of 24 but since then has been a “floating voter”.
He said that it was only a number of weeks ago that his attempt to become an independent peer was turned down by the House of Lords Appointments Commission. “I did this really silly thing and I was honest in the interview,” Martin admitted.
He said that he told the commission he could only offer a limited number of hours. “I’m very busy with my job, but most importantly, I have a nine-year-old daughter and until she is 13, my most important job from 6.30pm until 8pm at night is to be with her and put her to bed.
“I would see my role as being learning for three to five years, with limited input and then gradually over the next five to 10 years, committing more time to the House of Lords.”
He suggested that this may have represented a “stumbling block” to his application, although he said that the commission invited him to apply again in the future. I don’t think I was willing to give them the time that they felt was necessary to be in the Lords.”
A House of Lords spokesperson told the BBC, however, that appointments were “not determined on the basis of caring or family circumstances” and that “some very good candidates” were rejected.
While his latest move may have been rejected, Martin has made one political change so far this year. He successfully campaigned for scam ads are to be included in the Government’s Online Safety Bill, which was announced by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport back in March.
Late last year the consumer champion led a joint letter, signed by famous faces including Holly, Lorraine Kelly, and Robbie Williams, urging the Prime Minister to include paid scam adverts in the Online Safety Bill. At the time, paid scam advertising wasn’t set to be part of the bill unlike user-generated scams and a wide range of areas such as terrorism and child sexual exploitation.
Martin’s passion for the subject was based on his own experience after he previously sued Facebook for running scam adverts featuring his name and image.
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