Parliamentary sketch – a ballot for British jobs
Okay. I know they may not be household names. I know it’s a crazy party-list voting system and, yes, I know that the constituency covers a bizarre area from the London commuter belt to the Isles of Scilly and the island of Gibraltar. But I hope that you will vote in the European Parliamentary elections.
For my own part, I will be voting for candidates who stand up for Britain and British jobs. Of course, I appreciate that some people will want to vote for “stop the world I want to get off” parties and others may still want to vote for the party of little Englanders. But I want British representatives who will stand up for Britain in Europe; make sure that Britain stands tall and proud in the world and doesn’t become an irrelevant nation of xenophobes and an international laughing stock.
I appreciate that most electors see the European Parliament as relatively powerless and use European elections as an opportunity to protest against the larger/governing parties.
That’s why I floated the idea (in this column and elsewhere) of doing away with these pseudo-elections and replacing our 73 MEPs with a politically balanced group of MPs who we would pack off once a month to Brussels to do Britain’s bidding before coming back to Parliament to report on what they have done. After all, we’ve got far too many MPs and until there is a major cull in numbers, this is a far more effective use of taxpayers’ money whilst linking Westminster to Europe more effectively.
It seems that the bucket and spade weather has brought a succession of Tory MPs/Ministers to West Cornwall. But, through a strange oversight no doubt, they have neglected to notify me until the day of their visit or just afterwards! This might suggest that the intentions of these “Coalition colleagues” are possibly not as politically benign as they might be!
The latest visit by Chancellor George Osborne was disappointing. His letter notifying me arriving in my London office at about the time he was leaving the constituency.
Had he given me advance notice, rather than seeking to use the visit as an opportunity for acclamation and a photocall, I would have liked to have shown him the storm damage and what a “money is no object” Government response could have achieved by now. I could have shown him the great opportunities for investment in our area, including the excellent plan for a Train Care Centre just outside Penzance creating over 50 jobs for the area.
I would have explained to him the difficulties faced by local families unable to afford housing; and a tax system which still favours second home owners.
It would have been good to discuss the pressures on local government finance because of an unfair funding formula which benefits urban authorities to the detriment of places like Cornwall. And I could have used the opportunity to urge him to get behind our plans to give Cornwall more say to drive our economic regeneration through European and other programmes – an opportunity which we may be denied unless the Government changes its tune.
You can contact Andrew George by email: email@example.com. His constituency office can be contacted at Trewella, 18 Mennaye Road, Penzance, Cornwall, TR18 4NG. Telephone: 01736 360020.
Andrew George MP
Kernow a’n West ha Syllan
West Cornwall and the Scillies
Constituency of St Ives
Tel: 01736 360020
Fax: 01736 332866
20th May 2014