Davies was born in London and educated at Bassaleg School, Bassaleg, a suburb of Newport. He is the eldest child of Peter and Kathleen Davies. After leaving school in 1988 he worked for the British Steel Corporation and served with the Territorial Army. He worked for his family in their shipping company, Burrow Heath Ltd, before he entered politics. He was also a Special Constable with the British Transport Police for 9 years.
He married Aliz Harnisfoger, who is Hungarian, in October 2003 in Monmouth, and they have three children. Davies is a keen sportsman, he has fought in several charity boxing matches as 'The Tory Tornado' and is a former President of the Welsh Amateur Boxing Association.
He unsuccessfully contested the safe Labour seat of Bridgend at the 1997 general election, finishing in second place some 15,248 votes behind the sitting Labour MP Win Griffiths. As an opponent of the Welsh assembly who helped to set up the 'No' campaign in the devolution referendum, Davies gained a higher profile and was selected as Conservative candidate for Monmouth. At the inaugural 1999 Welsh Assembly Election he won election to the National Assembly for Wales there.
Davies speaks fluent Welsh after learning the language from scratch when he was elected to the National Assembly for Wales. He was awarded the accolade of Welsh Speaker of the Year and was the first AM to address the Welsh Language Society, Cymdeithas Yr Iaith Gymraeg, in Welsh.
He was elected at the 2005 general election as member of the House of Commons for Monmouth, the same seat he holds in the Welsh Assembly. He defeated the sitting Labour MP Huw Edwards by 4,527 votes, and remains the MP for the constituency. On 18 May 2005 he made his maiden speech as an MP, using it to give a history of his constituency from Geoffrey of Monmouth forwards. In parliament he joined the Welsh Affairs Select Committee on his election. After the 2015 general election, he was returned unopposed the chairmanship of the Committee.
As his name sounds similar to David Davis, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, and a candidate in the 2005 Conservative leadership contest, confusion could occur between the two in Westminster. Therefore, David Davies is referred to in the House of Commons in Westminster as David T.C. Davies. This has caused opposition MPs to refer to him in jest as Top Cat, a cartoon character who shares the same initials, T.C.. This confusion may have led to a mistake when the National Black Police Association invited Davies to speak at a conference in 2008; some sources suggest that this was a mistake and that they meant to invite his more prominent near-namesake, however the NBPA spokesman said that Davies had been invited because of his role on the Commons home affairs committee. The Monmouth MP attracted criticism with a speech condemning the NBPA's race-based membership policy for not allowing white people interested in fighting racism to become full members. The text of the speech on his website states that Keith Vaz asked him to attend the meeting after Vaz was unable to fulfil the engagement himself.
In June 2010, Davies was appointed Chairman of the Welsh Affairs Committee. He is a former member of the Home Affairs Select Committee and is an advocate of tough measures to deal with criminality. Davies is also Vice-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary China Group and a member of the All-Party Parliamentary British-German Group. In January 2012, the Prime Minister David Cameron announced his appointment as a representative of the UK delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
Davies was described by a rival candidate as being on the "far right of the Conservative Party", which he described as an attempt to smear him as "some sort of Nazi" for raising concerns over immigration. A critic of the Coalition, Davies once wrote a letter to his constituents apologising for "incompetence at the highest levels of government" and accusing David Cameron of failing to listen to the concerns of backbenchers and the people who elected them.
Davies opposed his Government's plans to introduce same-sex marriage, describing them as "barking mad" due to the possibility that they may alienate the Conservative party's traditional supporters; expanding on these views in a television interview he also expressed the opinion that "most parents would prefer their children not to be gay". Davies said he was not bigoted, offering the unusual defence that he had once fought an amateur boxing match against the "Pink Pounder", an openly gay boxer.
On 5 February 2013 MP David Davies voted against in the House of Commons Second Reading vote on marriage equality in Britain. He was given a score of 21% on issues of importance to the LGBT community, by Stonewall.
Davies has said "I support the sentiments of Better Off Out" which campaigns for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union.
Davies is sceptical of the theory of man-made global warming and questioned the evidence in Parliament
In January 2010 he was criticised for referring to some communities as having imported "barbaric views on women". Commenting on a rape case, Davies claimed that upbringing could be a major factor although he saw it as "not an Islamic issue... let me be quite clear, and it's not a racial issue"
During a phone-in during the Jeremy Vine show on BBC Radio 2, Davies told a member of the public that she should join the BNP after she suggested it should be a requirement for Welsh civil and public servants to understand Welsh. On his web page, he states his opinion 'that people who come to this country should learn English and be expected to work and to fit in with our rules, culture and traditions'.
Davies is a critic of a few national charities - Save The Children, RSPCA and RSPCC - that he regards as behaving in a politically motivated way, and is quoted as saying that "this is part of a pattern of charities which focus more on lobbying the government on issues than on their causes." He is not the only MP to believe this as a recent study by nfpSynergy showed that the majority of MPs are wary of charities “being political”.
Davies was criticised in 2015 for using the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack to promote the Conservative Party election pledge to abolish the Human Rights Act 1998. Davies’ claim that “under current laws, including the Human Rights Act, anyone can come to the UK and make a claim for asylum” was rebutted in The Guardian and two separate articles by Dr Mark Elliot at the University of Cambridge, and by legal practitioner Adam Wagner. Wagner commented that Davies “does not understand the law.” Wagner wrote that Davies was “wrong to say that 'Under current laws, including the Human Rights Act, anyone can come to the UK and make a claim for asylum.' The right to claim asylum is not contained in the Human Rights Act. It is in the 1951 Refugee Convention."
In response to the 2015 refugee crisis Davies claimed that most of the people attempting to enter the UK via Calais were not refugees fleeing war, but were economic migrants "mostly young men, mostly with mobile phones, chancing their luck". Davies sparked further controversy in October 2016 with a tweet suggesting refugees to the UK should have dental checks to determine their age. Davies' view was widely condemned, including by the British Dental Association which issued a statement describing the test as “inaccurate ... inappropriate and unethical”. The suggestion was also condemned by the British Association of Social Workers, and the test was also ruled out by the Home Office. When, in October 2016, the UK admitted 15 children from the camp with a legal right to travel to the UK, he asserted without foundation that all were actually adults lying about their ages. Davies appeared on ITV's Good Morning Britain on 19 October to defend dental checks, but became engaged in a heated exchange with Piers Morgan, who accused Davies of demonising refugee children, a charge which Davies denied.
In August 2017, Davies suggested victims of crime should not be provided with interpreters so that the police could save money. Conservative MEP for North West England, Sajjad Karim, described Davies' suggestion as "disturbing" and "ignorant" . When comedian Matt Lucas described the suggestion as "fascistic", Davies responded by calling Lucas a "moron" and a "leftie luvvie"
In September 2017, Davies claimed a Cardiff Students' Union training course had made "joking references to the death of Mrs Thatcher", tweeting a photograph of a presentation slide with two varients of the same hashtag, #nowthatthacherisdead and #NowThatThatcherIsDead. The purpose of the slide was later revealed to be about the importance of using capital letters in hashtags, with the two varients used as an illustration of how the death of Margaret Thatcher could become misconstrued as the death of singer and performer Cher.
Davies has said that he had been persuaded that continuing with a private operator was not in the interests of bridge users, and has called on his own government to take state control of the two Severn bridges so motorists and businesses can enjoy VAT-free tolls on a permanent basis. Davies is quoted as saying: “In normal circumstances I would be happy for a private company to run the bridges, but it’s important to be pragmatic. It’s clear that if the bridges are run by a state body, motorists and businesses would not have to pay VAT at 20% to drive across. The crossings are vital for the Welsh economy, and it’s important to get them down as much as possible."
Davies has generally voted against laws to promote equality and human rights.
Davies was sworn in as a Special Constable with the British Transport Police in March 2007. He has always been interested in government policing policy and saw an opportunity to get practical experience by joining the British Transport Police as a volunteer. Davies was on only his third patrol when he and a colleague saw a man acting suspiciously. When they arrested him for travel fraud, Davies searched him and found a handgun. He believes that his voluntary role "will give me front line experience that I can bring back to the House of Commons to help inform our debates on issues around crime and disorder."
In August 2011 Davies wrote about his experiences out on riot duty and recalled the horrific reality that police were ordered not to go out alone in uniform. Davies had to return from a short holiday for the recall of Parliament to discuss the riots across England; and also served on the front line, joining patrols in London that week in his role as a special constable. He called for the police to be encouraged to take tougher action during the riots.
He was asked to resign in 2015 after serving 9 years as a special constable due to new rules about police officers taking part in politics.
During the trial of fellow Welsh MP Nigel Evans, who was also Davies' best man at his 2003 wedding, Davies defended his character, stating that Evans liked a drink and became jovial when intoxicated, unlike some people who have a dark side. Davies is quoted as saying "He’s been a good friend of mine for a lot of years. I am stunned by these allegations and find them impossible to believe."
Evans was acquitted.
Davies was criticised by The Daily Telegraph, for claiming £2,000 and paying it to a family business. Davies justified his actions in an interview. Davies later said he had done nothing wrong, and told BBC Wales that the work was done at short notice and at cost value, and neither he or any of his family made any profit from the work. He said he was now having to use a specialist company in London for the production of such material, one that was used by many other MPs, and the real cost was significantly higher.
In May 2009, after expense scandal revelations were published by The Daily Telegraph in relation to other politicians, Davies became the first member of the Commons voluntarily to put all his expense claims in public for anybody to examine. They were scrutinised by an independent panel that included a journalist, and a former Labour candidate among others, and Davies emerged unscathed from his decision to release all his expenses claims from the House of Commons.
Davies strongly criticised the planning and organisation of the first Velothon Wales event to be run in Wales which passed through his constituency. This was due to the disruption to local businesses, and complaints from residents who would be trapped in their home all day.