Call me old fashioned but I believe that since I have been given the honour of representing my constituents, I should do what I said I would do - implement the manifesto upon which I was elected. My constituents have a right to expect no less. They also have a right to expect that as events occur that I will respond. My responses to such events are formulated by listening to the views of my constituents and using my judgment to consider all sides of the argument and relevant evidence. That judgment is based on the best interests of my constituents and what will be in the common good.
On Monday we had a debate about the UK’s relationship with the EU. Having been a Conservative Party worker all my life I know how passionate some Conservatives can feel about the EU.
Many constituents told me they felt cheated by previous governments not following through on a promises of a referendum on EU treaties that passed considerable power from the UK to the EU. So emotions were running high in Conservative hearts across the country as well as well as in the debate in Parliament on Monday.
A range of motions were put forward for debate. I supported the motion that called on the “Government to publish a White Paper (start of a Bill) in the next session of Parliament (May 2012) setting out the powers and cempetences that it would seek to repatriate from the EU, to commence a renegoitiation of the UK’s relationship with the EU and to put the outcome of those negotiations to a national referendum.” Sadly there was not a vote on this motion.
That we need to fundamentally change our involvement with the EU is without question. That the Government needs to cut us free from some quite ridiculous EU laws and regulations is a matter of urgency. That decisions concerning the well being of the people of this country should be made by their democratically elected representatives is what I campaigned for before the election and what I will continue to push the Government to do.
Measures to tackle the current debt crisis in some of the EU countries whose currency is the euro will require changes to EU treaties. Changes that in the near future will enable the Government to re negoitiate with partners to bring more decision making back from Brussels to Westminster.
To go back to what people voted for back in the 1970s – a mutually beneficial trading area not a European super state.
By reducing the money we spend on the EU, cutting back on unnecessary laws, regulations and red-tape we can improve our country’s competativeness and ability to trade with countries not only in the EU but around the world.
The majority of my constituents are worried about the future. About their jobs and pensions and jobs for their children and grand children. Above all, they want me and all other politicians to be focused on sorting out the mess our country is in - offering them hope that the sacrifices they are making are worthwhile.