This evening saw a vote in the House of Commons on allowing same-sex marriage. It passed, but my MP Eleanor Laing, the Shadow Minister for Women and Equality whilst the Tories were in opposition, did not vote for reasons she explained to the local media.
I decided to send her a message through the “Write to Them” website. I do feel a little self-conscious about noting my own gender orientation in the message, which should be irrelevant, but I wanted to point out that the measure is supported by others than those who want to marry their loved ones of the same sex.
Dear Eleanor Laing,
As a constituent, I am writing to let you know that I am disappointed by your choice to abstain from voting in this evening’s bill on same-sex marriage.
I am particularly disappointed by your publicised, but weak, reasoning. Are you in favour of same-sex marriage or not? You claim to be unwilling to vote against the bill, but due to the concerns of constituents you are unwilling to vote for it. As a former Shadow Minister for Women and Equality, I would have expected a more considered approach. I understand that there is a conflict between a Member’s requirements to represent their constituents and a Government’s requirements to lead the country, but on this occasion I believe you have misjudged that balance.
Whilst I realise that a “swing to the left” in politics in this region means the Conservatives gaining seats from the BNP, you appear to be cowed by local opinion rather than doing what you must surely believe is correct.
(For what it is worth, having no desire to enter into a
Today was Gordon Brown’s first Prime Minister’s Questions session in Parliament.Â At one point, he pointed out that the leader of the opposition should remember he’d only been in office for five days.
Well, that’s alright then, let’s just hope we don’t get anything like terrorist attacks for the first couple of weeks or so.
I wish more politicians would watch “The West Wing.” The recent election portrayed there showed the candidates, both of them relatively upstanding men (as politicians go) making every attempt to refrain from using negative campaigning. Of course, that eventually broke down, but the sentiment was there.
This evening I saw the Labour Party’s first Party Political Broadcast for the upcoming council elections. You might think that in these enlightened times it would have let us know how good Labour councils are in providing local services (regardless of whether they truly are or not — this is an election broadcast after all). No such luck. Instead the entire time was spent talking about a chameleon called “Dave.” For those of you outside the UK, this refers to the leader of the opposition, David Cameron. They even have a website, Dave the Chameleon.
Does this encourage me to vote Labour? No, if anything it turns me off them. Why should I vote for them? Because they can call somebody else names? There were plenty of kids in the schoolyard that could do that. I’m having difficulty seeing who the broadcast was aimed at. Conservatives? I can’t see them taking it seriously. Floating voters? Would anybody fall for such a cheap trick? Nope, the only people I can see it amusing are the insiders, and their mind is already make up. What a waste of time and money. I’m all for a bit of sarcasm (I’ve even been known to use it myself on occasion), but please, make it worthwhile.
To top it off, one of the links opens a Microsoft Word document. Not HTML, not even PDF, but good old MS Word. XP helpfully reminds me, “If you do not trust the source, do not open or save this file.” Well, do I trust the website of any political party? What do you think?