Sunday, May 09, 2010

Who would be an MP?

Pity the poor MP.

He or she has pounded the streets of their constituency for a month and been involved in an election that has been a real battle. Then on election night there is the euphoria of winning the seat and going to Westminster as duly elected Member of Parliament. Thrilling stuff.

But it doesn't take long for your feet to get planted very firmly back on the ground by your beloved electors.

Take a look at the blog of David Jones, MP for Clwyd West, where he thanks the electors for returning him. And it was a good win. Notwithstanding the national mood now, with a slender 133 majority when he won the seat from Gareth Thomas (Lab) in 2005, it was number 2 on Labour's list of seats they wanted to win from the Tories.

Well, he increased his majority to a much more comfortable 6,419, a very decent result by any standards.

But look at the messages of congratulation, and especially one from 'Hugh' who says that Mr Jones's victory was helped 'in no small part' by his efforts on behalf of Colwyn Bay Pier - sod the economy, schools, hospitals, the war in Afghanistan, it's aging Victoriana we really care about. What's more, inquired Hugh, was there anything to report on this from the Steering Group.

I know that Mr Jones will take the matter as seriously as a conscientious constituency MP would, but you'd have to have a heart of stone not to forgive him a roll of the eyes and a muttered: "Give me a break."

David and I are politically poles apart, but I think he's a sharp MP. The problem with record gains for the Tories is that in that group of newbies you'll have a few chinless wonders who you wouldn't want running a whelk stall - no offence, Labour had its fair share of lobby fodder in 1997.

If they do form a government the Tories need to make the most of those in their number who have the intellect to make a go of it. I'd keep an eye on Mr Jones in the coming months.

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