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Sir Graham's political career commenced as an active Young Conservative, when he cut his political teeth as a member of Thurrock Borough Council from 1965–79, and of Essex County Council from 1967–70. He stood unsuccessfully for Parliament in 1970 and 1974, before being elected in Luton East in 1979. After constituency boundary changes, he transferred to Luton South at the 1983 general election, holding the seat until his defeat at the 1997 general election.

During his time in Parliament, Bright served as a Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to various members of the Cabinet for 18 years, most notably to John Major for his first four years as Prime Minister (1990–94). Bright then went on to serve as a Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Party from 1994–97. He received a knighthood in 1994. Bright introduced two Private Member's Bills to the House of Commons which became law.

In 2012 Sir Graham Bright was elected as the Conservative party candidate in the election for Cambridgeshire's Police and Crime Commissioner, a position he held until 2016 when he didn’t seek re-election.

Outside politics, he worked as a marketing executive, factory manager and company director.