Published: 13:16, 16 November 2012 |
Updated: 09:43, 10 January 2014
Dartford MP Gareth Johnson insists he is in favour of a free press despite putting his name to a letter widely interpreted as calling for state intervention.
Mr Johnson was one of more than 40 Conservatives who signed a letter ahead of the publication of a long-awaited report into the ethics and practices of the industry.
In the submission to The Guardian calling for the move, the MPs argue Parliament "must not duck the challenge" to take a "once-in-a-generation opportunity to put things right."
A free Press is essential for a free society they argue, but any new regulator needs to be independent of the Press and politicians or it will be "destined to fail."
According to the Daily Telegraph a number of the signatories - not Mr Johnson - had experienced "bruising encounters" with the press.
Mr Johnson said today: "The principle that the press must continue to remain free and not be run by the state is essential in a free society. I don't believe there is a problem with the local media but some national journalism has overstepped the mark.
"The system of self-regulation has not worked as consistently as we would like and so a fresh look at the way things currently work should be welcomed."
The Leveson Inquiry was established by the government in the wake of the phone hacking scandal at the News of The World.
Many have called for improved regulation enshrined in law, but many within the industry are fiercely opposed to this, claiming it will affect freedom of the Press.
One of those is Kent university journalism professor Tim Luckhurst, who is based at the university’s Chatham Maritime campus.
He has resigned from the National Union of Journalists in protest at the organisation’s backing for statutory regulation.
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
This is a brand new online resource covering every aspect of owning and improving a home in Kent and Medway.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating! PLUS, register for free!.
Neil Miller, Hever Castle head gardener is new gardening blogger.
Buy pictures that you've seen in a KM newspaper, or send in a picture and we will place it on our photo sales website so that you can purchase a super, unique gift.