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A Reply From My MP

You may recall that I wrote an email to my MP, Rudi Vis of the Labour Party, on 12th June about his lack of voting For or Against the Counter Terrorism Bill which the government just about got voted through.

Well, this evening when I got home from work I had a letter from Dr Rudi Vis MP waiting for me complete with House of Commons paper and envelope!

Dear Mr Abranson,

Thank you for your email of the 12th June. You are quite right, I did not vote. I had long conversations with many friends in the House of Lords where the Bill is highly likely to be defeated. I was not inclined to go for a Government defeat in the House of Commons.

I share your grave concerns about the 42 days.

Yours Sincerely,

Rudi Vis


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
(no subject) - epocalypse - Jun. 18th, 2008 09:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 18th, 2008 09:32 pm (UTC)
I would be inclined to follow that up with asking him why he was not inclined to finish the blessed thing off at the Commons rather than dragging it out and getting some poxy watered-down-but-just-as-bad thing slipped through the Lords.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 18th, 2008 09:43 pm (UTC)
From the same MP, or a different one?

Getting the official letter is a nice sense of involvement but MP (or their staff) know how to use word processors as well as the rest of us.

TBH, not voting could be a tactical decision - or it could be a evil plan to placate his electorate - and I cant really see anyway of telling.
Jun. 18th, 2008 10:11 pm (UTC)
I think it was a tactical decision as he didn't want to see Labour embarassed by a Parliamentary loss (and let's face it Gordon Brown is not having a good time and loosing this bill would have thrown up loads more discontent and leadership challenge talk). He obviously feels that the Bill is doomed to fail in Lords anyway so why heap more problems on his party in Parliament for something that will fail - and cause less of a stir by failing - in the House of Lords.

I can see his reasoning. Personally I would have still preferred him to have voted against it, but I can understand his personal choice on why he did not.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 19th, 2008 09:12 am (UTC)
Not quite, I'd call him a 'modern politician'.

'Modern politicians' are a new breed, they aren't in politics because something annoyed them, or seemed unjust to them. They aren't even, nessecarily, in politics because they can see a way to build a little empire for themselves.

They are in politics because while they were at University they decided to take a politics degree and their job path from leaving Uni was in to politics. While people used to get 'real jobs' and then end up in politics for other reasons, these people only have politics as a job and so they have to worry about staying in politics for their livelihood and their pension plan. As such they are more likely to toe the party line, play the numbers games and not rock the boat.

Thanks to that you end up with lame ducks who would rather pass the buck up the line than stand up and be counted. Like it, or hate it, it's why the old peer system was actually a great part of our political system. OK, you ended up with a lot of old farts who were out of touch with real life, but you also ended up with a lot of people who were concerned enough with doing the right thing that they actually voted with their heads and their hearts rather than just agreeing with whoever had them by the balls.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 19th, 2008 09:29 am (UTC)
Erm, well. OK, I got nothing :-)

You're right. Twats indeed.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 19th, 2008 10:47 am (UTC)
My personal method is to go and vote, but spoil the ballot. I tend to write something like "I choose not to vote as I don't believe this system can represent me" rather than crossing anything.

Part of me likes to think that that small nick at the system goes somewhere. That is vastly outweighed by the rest of me that knows it just gets marked 'spoilt' and chucked in the bin, but that's what you get for being a middle class rebel I guess.

I live in a solid Tory seat where the incumbant always gets her 18,000 majority so voting for anyone else is pointless anyway but I refuse just not to vote.

While I'm not sure what could be done about it, I would welcome a 'none of these' box on voting slips and I believe that counting spoilt papers is a very important part of the democratic system, whether it is or not.

In local elections I vote to retain 'no overall control' although even that failed last time round as we went to a Tory local council too.
Jun. 19th, 2008 08:36 am (UTC)
I'm not sold on his response at all. If he has concerns then he's the one with the power to address them, he's the one with the vote. Letting someone else do what is arguably your job is a bad thing.
Jun. 19th, 2008 12:40 pm (UTC)
wrong actually. He is a representative.

Technically, he is there with OUR vote...
Jun. 19th, 2008 09:20 am (UTC)
What a cop out. Though I dont like David Davis's politics in general I was very impressed that there are still some politicians prepared to make a stand on a matter of principle that might endanger their career.
Rudi Vis seems to have forgotten that when you believe something is wrong you need to do something about it, not let it happen.
Jun. 19th, 2008 11:00 am (UTC)
David Davis is making a huge lunge to get back in to the public conciousness on the hope that when the next election comes round the Tories will get in and he'll get given a plum role as a true conviction politician.

All the talk of 'trying to get the argument out in the public domain' or whatever, is bollocks, it's not going to happen and unless he is truly naive over how politics works he knows it's not going to happen. He will be elected back in to that seat whatever and the government isn't going to be stupid enough to be drawn in to a competition which they will lose and lose points on other policies to boot.

He hasn't even managed to bring 'the erosion of public liberties' up on the agenda particularly as what most people are talking about is him taking the step to resign and restand, much more than why he says he did it.
Jun. 19th, 2008 12:00 pm (UTC)
A fair point-but in practice he is already causing a lot of problems for himself in the Conservative Party that I doubt he will ever recover from. If it IS his intention to try and get a plum role in the party I think he will probably fail in that. Besides-he has already thrown away a plum role. The only role he could sensibly try for would be party leader again, and I doubt he would get that. He has made all his colleges look self-serving and weak-and they wont forget that.

Actually he has managed to get some discussion going, the problem has been that large chunks of the media and most of the labour and Tory party seem keen to divert attention away from the issues if they can. There IS some potential for talk to change and the issues become more prominent over time and the current talk is probably mostly just a short term reaction. I am NOT a fan of David Davis, and yes, he may have mixed motives- but I DO respect that he is making some sort of stand, however flawed. Personally I think what should have happened is that a lot of Labour MPS should have refused to support Brown and walked out-perhaps even resigned from the party, but they are all spineless and self serving and a disgrace to any sort of ideals any of them might once held.

My own feeling is that what we need is to see more politicians being prepared to make a stand on major issues and defy the normal 'heads in the sand and watch your own back' approach of most of our Parliament. Motives do often get a bit mixed- Clare Short dithered over Iraq and fudged her stand-though she did it a go, Robin Cook was more direct about it but apart from the Liberals who opposed the war what characterised the response was a lot of Labour politician's covering their own backsides instead of standing up for principles they believed in. The same is happening over civil liberties now.
Jun. 19th, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC)
I am sorry. To me thats unacceptable.

An MP that 'shares your concerns', ie, thinks its wrong, but feels that a long-term political game with a tax cost against it is far better than internal politics.

Basically all that letter tells me is that you shouldn't vote their sorry arse in next time. Perhaps you should share it with your local Lib-Dem activists so that come re-election they have the appropriate material to work from.

No point sending it to the Conservatives they would just resign themselves over the issue... Boom Boom! Oh, OK, I'll get me coat.
Jun. 19th, 2008 12:56 pm (UTC)
He's not running for re-election at the next election anyway. He's already announced this is his last term.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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