For years now, the backstory of the Hemmings has played out over the pages of the local and the national press - who can forget how John waited until the 2005 election was in the bag before admitting that he had impregnated his PA and fellow councillor, Emily Cox (since defenestrated as Moseley and Kings Heath Labour party started clearing out the yellow peril in their ward) and so angered his wife that she accused him of having waded through 26 women since their marriage. A fact that John specifically denies. One thing to bear in mind with John Hemming is that he chooses his words carefully to mean exactly what he wants them to mean. If he denies that there were 26 women, I have no doubt that there were not 26. It doesn't mean that there weren't 25 or 27. After all, Nick Clegg demonstrated his manhood by claiming more than 30 notches on his bedpost, so it must be something about Liberal Democrats.
John has also never been shy of publicity - any publicity will do. He admitted his affair with Ms Cox during a 'hogwhimperingly' drunken lunch with his old university mate, Ian Hislop, so cannot have been shocked at the coverage that it got. He nominated himself for Love Rat of the Year and never misses a chance to get his name and face in the paper. Last week, the Sunday Mercury broke the news that Emily is again with child and on the Restirred forum, John was dismissive of the story
It is up to the media as to what they wish to report. I did not release either story to the newspaper. and then bemoaned the fact that his parliamentary work had been ignored.Amazingly, he has now given a hard-hitting interview on the big issues of the day to the Daily Telegraph. Oh no, silly me - he's talking, or not talking about, his peculiar domestic arrangements.
I've never moralised about John's behaviour and I don't intend to start now. I just wish he'd stop revelling in it - it demeans the office that he is lucky enough to hold and makes him a laughing stock. The people of Yardley deserve better and come 2015, they will certainly get it.