Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Tory Taliban

A conversation at a book launch, back in March, took place between your humble Devil and the oleaginous (and rather short) Brooks Newmark MP—a government whip who will, no doubt, be shortly bullying our elected representatives into voting against our interests...

This lovely little chap was describing, with some relish, how he has to keep MPs in line—describing them as "the Tory Taliban". Your humble Devil is not a sensitive fellow, but I thought that "the Tory Taliban" was a little harsh: after all, said MPs only vote against the government, not cut the noses and ears off teenagers.

Nevertheless, in the spirit of gathering amusing data, your humble Devil suggested a couple of names of MPs who might qualify as "the Tory Taliban"—names such as Douglas Carswell and Steve Baker.

It will not surprise any of my readers to hear that the two names were confirmed: nor that the immensely self-satisfied Brooks Newmark told a terribly amusing story about having to remind Steve Baker that "he was elected as a Tory MP" and that he had better play ball or else face deselection.

Don't you love the way that party politics works...?

6 comments:

Leg-iron said...

I think the most interesting thing to come out of the EU-referendum circus will be hard evidence that the MPs we vote for don't represent us.

They represent Cameron/Clegg/Moribund. All we are expected to do is pay for them and keep quiet.

It's about time that was made very clear to an awful lot of people, and I think Cameron is about to do just that.

Roger Thornhill said...

What leg iron says.

In a way this vote and whipping should be seen as very useful, an education, a bringing to a head, a lifting of the stone to see what nasty creatures exist below.

Brooks Nomark, for example.

James said...

Brooks Newmark told a terribly amusing story about having to remind Steve Baker that "he was elected as a Tory MP" and that he had better play ball or else face deselection.

I'd like to see how such a conversation would go with Sarah Wollaston (mentalist-at-large).

Personally, I wouldn't miss her, given her squeakings about alcohol pricing and all the usual Nanny-knows-best stuff that goes with it, but given that she was selected in a popular primary contest, it would be much harder to ditch her.

Anonymous said...

Would Steve Baker be reelected if he stood as an independent against a more obedient Tory candidate? We know what happened to the fellow that Tristam Hunt replaced, but I hope that even tribal Tory voters have a bit more brains than the Labour voters of Stoke.

James said...

Steve Baker wouldn't be reelected, as at best he'd split the vote (assuming he was a popular MP, did lots of campaigning and had managed to establish his name locally). Of course, the perversity of a threat of vote-splitting is that it cedes a seat to an opposition candidate. Which do the Conservatives value more - a seat retained or a seat lost?

ENGLISHMAN said...

I expect that most mps would love to have this man come round and whip them.