Saturday, April 21, 2007

Get it Straight!!!

A few weeks ago, Andrew Lansley, the Conservative MP for South Cambridgeshire gave a talk to my English class. The main subject of the talk was to do with parliamentary procedure, as we had just finished our entry for the annual Youth Parliament competition , but then came an opportunity to asks questions of him. As the Conservatives aren't very popular in my circle of friends, we laid into him a bit, asking him about why, exactly, proportional representation is a bad thing and why he chose to be a Tory. He once told my mom that "it was the only way he could get elected," but it turns out he Tory because he previously held a position at the Conservative Research Department, alongside people such as current Tory leader, David Cameron. So later on in the question session, I asked him which way he voted in the prelude to the Iraq war, as the Tories were generally pro-war. So off he went on this long spiel about how he wrote an article in the Independent on the eve of invasion, condemning the UK's involvement. But he never actually said which way he voted. So that evening, I looked up his voting record. He had indeed voted for the Iraq war. So, I took the appropriate course of action. I e-mailed him (or most likely, his secretary,) and offered him that chance to explain himself. Several weeks later, this turns up on my doorstep, on very fancy House of Commons letterhead:

Dear Mr van de Ven,
Thank you for your correspondence regarding my voting record on Iraq.

I have checked both the websites you refer to - Public Whip and They Work For You.
Firstly, they use the same source of information and, secondly, the calculation is misleading.
They weigh the votes in such a way that they do not adequately reflect my stance, which was expressed in the Independent article you read prior to looking on the websites.

I hope this is helpful and I am sorry for the confusion.

Yours Sincerely

Andrew Lansley

So the Good and the Bad. Where do we start?

The Good? He didn't stick the letters MP at the end of his name.

The Bad? This could take a while. He can't face up to the facts in front of a bunch of school kids. Imagine what he'd be like in Parliament. He still hasn't confessed to the fact that, A), he is a puppet, or was it b), he's pro-war? If he was really a good politician, he'd attach a copy of said Independent article, which I hadn't read when I sent him the e-mail.

This letter also exposes Lansley as the puppet he is, voting with the party on an issue that apparently, he strongly disagrees with.

So no, Mr Lansley, your letter is not helpful and neither does it ease my confusion.

Oh, and by the way, searches on Google and the Independent website didn't return the article.

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