Neil Parish 640th worst constituency MP out of 650 (Swire 649th!)

These are the rankings of all south-west MPs for how good they have been as constituency MPs. As noted in an earlier post (with 1 being top and 650 being bottom) Swire came 649th!

Just as interesting is the ranking of Neil Parish (Tiverton and Honiton) who came 640th.

Basically, East Devon had two of the worst constituency MPs in the House of Commons with one of them (Parish) almost certain to be re-elected and able to spend more time on his Somerset farm at our expense.

AND no doubt if (heaven forfend)Jupp and his boss Raab get in, Jupp would no doubt be spending most of his time cosying up to Raab in London.

#56 Luke Pollard Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport Devon Labour
#103 Sarah Wollaston Totnes Devon Liberal Democrat
#149 Anne Marie Morris Newton Abbot Devon Conservative
#175 Geoffrey Cox Torridge and West Devon Devon Conservative
#306 Gary Streeter South West Devon Devon Conservative
#343 Mel Stride Central Devon Devon Conservative
#453 Kevin Foster Torbay Devon Conservative
#511 Ben Bradshaw Exeter Devon Labour
#528 Johnny Mercer Plymouth, Moor View Devon Conservative
#612 Peter Heaton-Jones North Devon Devon Conservative
#640 Neil Parish Tiverton and Honiton Devon Conservative
#649 Hugo Swire East Devon Devon Conservative

Rogues Gallery: Old codger Tweedledum, wet-behind-the-ears Tweedledee and Frit de Peiffel Johnson!

Gosh, doesn’t Hugo (I’m not going to interfere now I’m no longer an MP) Swire look wrecked! Where has he been! Obviously having a good time now he doesn’t have his fourth part-time job to worry about!

And their boss Frit de Peiffel Johnson

The boss of the East Devon Tory candidate in East Devon behaves appallingly at hustings

Owl has found it difficult to find evidence that East Devon’s Toey hopeful (Simon Jupp) IS an aide to Dominic Raab (he is shown as aide to a Treasury MP on the parliamentary list of 5 November 2019) but as he and Swire say he is – it must be so, must it not?

Jupp is said to be a communications expert in the Tory Party – wonder what advice he gave Raab about this?

Dominic Raab was called a “coward” by the friends and family of Harry Dunn as they were left outside of a hustings in his constituency.

The 19-year-old died in a crash in Northamptonshire in August that led to the suspect leaving the UK claiming diplomatic immunity.

His family had hoped to put pressure on the foreign secretary who attended the event at a packed church in Surrey.

A member of staff at the church said they were kept out due to fire safety.

The Conservative Party has been approached for comment. …”

Left-wing newspaper points out Swire’s extra income as MP

Will Swire find some nice part-time job for Jupp if he succeeds him? Will Dominic Raab (to whom he is said to be an adviser, though parlianmentary records do not show this) give his SPAD a leg up? As Swire organised Raab’s attempt for the Tory Leadership will they perhaps both offer Jupp their help?

Might we see even less of Jupp than Swire (if that’s possible?).

“TOP Tories stand to collectively lose more than £2.5 million a year under Labour’s plan to stop MPs moonlighting for extra money, the Morning Star can reveal.

Labour’s manifesto has set out plans to “tackle vested interests” in British politics — including a pledge to “stop MPs from taking paid second jobs” with limited exemptions to maintain professional registrations like nursing.

The move would hit around a fifth of Tory MPs, according to the Star’s analysis of the register of MPs’ interests.
More than 50 were topping up their £79,468 salaries with permanent second jobs on which they spent a combined 9,500 hours a year. …

… Mark Pritchard and Hugo Swire were also managing to hold down an extra four jobs outside of Parliament, making them £77,880 per annum and £104,996 (almost half of it in shares) respectively. …”

https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/b/top-tories-lose-more-ps25-mill-year-under-labours-plans-stop-mps-moonlighting

Book of the Month

“Hugo learned a lot of things in high school, but never right from wrong – so when he was offered a full-ride scholarship to the college of his dreams in exchange for destroying the world, he signed up right away. Unethical ethics professors, econoanesthesiologists, how lawyers think they can bring forth Armageddon, a psychologist who asks patients to call him ‘Daddy’ – plus more trolley problems than you can shake a stick at – all in Hugo and the Greatest Good, a comedy about education, ethics, trolley problems, and, of course, destroying the world. Written by author Andrew Stanek because the forces of good were too late to stop him.”

(Available from Amazon)

Swire doesn’t need to do any work but he’s still being paid

So, he’s just Joe Public.

“… Do MPs still get paid during the election period, and do they have to do any work?

MPs are no longer MPs once Parliament is dissolved. They are ordinary members of the public with no special privileges. That is because every seat in the House of Commons is now up for grabs.

However, they continue to receive their salary, currently £79,468 a year, up to and including polling day. If they have chaired a select committee, the extra payment they get for doing that job stops on the day Parliament is dissolved.

They are under no obligation to do any work during this period and their parliamentary passes are locked out. But they can keep abreast of urgent casework via parliamentary email. …”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-50255211

Retiring MPs like Swire getting golden goodbyes

Poor Mrs Swire is being made redundant from her “research assistant” job in her husband’s office from which she has claimed a salary of £30,000 per year for many years. Doubt we will be seeing her at her local Job Centre.

” … The MPs’ expenses body has had to request an emergency £30million to cover payouts and winding-up costs for MPs leaving Parliament.

IPSA would have needed the money at the next election but it wasn’t budgeted for this year.

It will cover loss of office payments for any MPs who stand but lose their seat – equal to double the normal redundancy payment.

It’ll also cover a winding-up payment worth two months of salary for MPs closing their office.

And it’ll cover a winding up budget worth more than £50,000 per MP to go towards office expenses and staff. …”

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/general-election-7-bits-bad-20816311

Swire insults Claire Wright, tries to sabotage her vote and says good riddance to East Devon

Hugo Swire where he belongs

Hugo Swire where he belongs

If you want to read the article, find it yourself.

Owl will just offer a few quotes (with Owl comments) from it so you can see that Swire is sucking sour, sour grapes and is so happy to be quitting East Devon – where, in the last few years, he hasn’t even lived:

“Voting for an independent would not achieve anything.

(he then goes on to suggest splitting Claire Wright’s vote between other parties to ensure she is not successful).

“Crucially, when Parliament is more important than ever, we do need people of quality.”

(Indeed, Hugo, pity we have had to wait so long for you to stand down to get within spitting distance of this).

“I will not interfere in the politics of East Devon because that would be unfair on the next MP but I will return to see friends and colleagues.”

(Well, to be fair you only came to East Devon to shake hands, schmooze and see friends so nothing changes there).

“It’s been a huge chunk of my life but, at the end of the day, I only did it because residents continued to return me.”

(Yep, he only did it so he could swan around the Middle East on the back of our votes).

Goodbye and good riddance. We await with bated breath the announcement of your replacement …

“Independent candidate Claire Wright hopes to end 150 years of Conservative rule in East Devon”

“I hope that the election in East Devon will reflect the mood of the nation in that my opponents will be respectful and polite when challenging me and I in turn, also pledge to operate in the same way.”

Devon County Councillor Claire Wright has confirmed that she will be standing in the upcoming December General Election.

The Independent councillor for the Otter Valley ward has twice stood for election to Parliament and on both occasions came second behind the Conservatives.

The incumbent MP, Sir Hugo Swire, has announced he will step down from his role, and Claire, confirming that she will stand, said that she hope that this time the East Devon constituency will finally break its 150 year Conservative rule.

There will be a general election on the December 12, which will be the first December election since 1923, and her campaign was launch at the Royal Beacon Hotel in Exmouth on Saturday afternoon.

Claire said she is excited that the countdown to what is being dubbed the most unpredictable and epic general election in living memory has started and is adamant she can change the course of political history in East Devon.

She said: “I’ve always been an Independent. I’ve always been elected because of my hard work and the way I stand up for people, not because of the party I’m from.

“It’s a complete myth that you need a party around you in the Commons. You don’t. It’s all about the person. The Green Party’s Caroline Lucas is probably one of the best known and effective MPs in the country.

“I’ve worked cross-party for the last 10 years to achieve a range of things and I’d be exactly the same if I was in Parliament.

“In 2015, I was an unknown. Now, after two campaigns, I can really challenge. I just think I can do so much good.

“There’s nothing certain about this election. National predictions don’t really apply to East Devon, because I am independent and the only viable alternative because I have a track record.

“I think I can attract voters from across the political spectrum. I’m a hard-working and effective councillor and will be a hard-working and effective MP. I know I can win.”

She added: “The last December election was almost 100 years ago, and campaigning is going to tough, with dark nights, cold and possibly pretty awful weather.

“But despite the challenges of leafleting and door knocking, last night the air of excitement was palpable and we sensed the enormity and potential of what we’re about to enter.

“I hope that this time the East Devon constituency could finally break its 150 year Conservative rule and see an Independent MP elected, whose manifesto is based on local people’s views and who intends to truly represent the people of East Devon, with no party whip to get in the way of that representation.

“This is my third general election. I have effectively been campaigning to be East Devon’s MP for six years, including over a year of preparation for this one. And who would have thought that in this election, in a supposedly safe Conservative seat, an election would have been called with no Conservative candidate.”

She added: “This time feels different. It has a different energy about it. I’ve been a councillor for a decade. And I’m a seasoned campaigner, having fought five elections (this is the sixth) since 2011 and once again, I have a strong, committed and extraordinarily motivated and hardworking team around me. I am also very fortunate to have a much wider team of hundreds of leafleters and door knockers.

“Independent candidate Claire Wright hopes to end 150 years of Conservative rule in East Devon
“I hope that the election in East Devon will reflect the mood of the nation in that my opponents will be respectful and polite when challenging me and I in turn, also pledge to operate in the same way.”

Devon County Councillor Claire Wright has confirmed that she will be standing in the upcoming December General Election.

The Independent councillor for the Otter Valley ward has twice stood for election to Parliament and on both occasions came second behind the Conservatives.

The incumbent MP, Sir Hugo Swire, has announced he will step down from his role, and Claire, confirming that she will stand, said that she hope that this time the East Devon constituency will finally break its 150 year Conservative rule.

There will be a general election on the December 12, which will be the first December election since 1923, and her campaign was launch at the Royal Beacon Hotel in Exmouth on Saturday afternoon.

Claire Wright and her election team
Claire Wright and her election team
Claire said she is excited that the countdown to what is being dubbed the most unpredictable and epic general election in living memory has started and is adamant she can change the course of political history in East Devon.

She said: “I’ve always been an Independent. I’ve always been elected because of my hard work and the way I stand up for people, not because of the party I’m from.

“It’s a complete myth that you need a party around you in the Commons. You don’t. It’s all about the person. The Green Party’s Caroline Lucas is probably one of the best known and effective MPs in the country.

“I’ve worked cross-party for the last 10 years to achieve a range of things and I’d be exactly the same if I was in Parliament.

“In 2015, I was an unknown. Now, after two campaigns, I can really challenge. I just think I can do so much good.

“There’s nothing certain about this election. National predictions don’t really apply to East Devon, because I am independent and the only viable alternative because I have a track record.

“I think I can attract voters from across the political spectrum. I’m a hard-working and effective councillor and will be a hard-working and effective MP. I know I can win.”

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Latest Local Democracy

She added: “The last December election was almost 100 years ago, and campaigning is going to tough, with dark nights, cold and possibly pretty awful weather.

“But despite the challenges of leafleting and door knocking, last night the air of excitement was palpable and we sensed the enormity and potential of what we’re about to enter.

“I hope that this time the East Devon constituency could finally break its 150 year Conservative rule and see an Independent MP elected, whose manifesto is based on local people’s views and who intends to truly represent the people of East Devon, with no party whip to get in the way of that representation.

“This is my third general election. I have effectively been campaigning to be East Devon’s MP for six years, including over a year of preparation for this one. And who would have thought that in this election, in a supposedly safe Conservative seat, an election would have been called with no Conservative candidate.”

Claire Wright
She added: “This time feels different. It has a different energy about it. I’ve been a councillor for a decade. And I’m a seasoned campaigner, having fought five elections (this is the sixth) since 2011 and once again, I have a strong, committed and extraordinarily motivated and hardworking team around me. I am also very fortunate to have a much wider team of hundreds of leafleters and door knockers.

Devon Community Insight Survey

Devon residents are being asked what matters most in a survey run by Devon County Council.

The Community Insight Survey asks about experiences of a range of services and the County Council’s strategic aims.

It also asks questions about Council Tax increases, community resources, if people have good access to green spaces, and if the council’s decision make sense.

A council spokesman said: “We are committed to building a Devon where everyone can live their lives well, and to do this we need to understand what matters most to you and where you experience difficulties. The results will be shared across services and used to inform budget decisions and how services are provided in future.”

The survey can be filled in online at https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=gzehjWjLP0S7S5l_d_1b-3k2zoamfoJKgcKfgFq7GXBUQ0lXOFI1MVlPQkQ3N1Q0NUZPWFM1R1VENy4u

“I hope that the election in East Devon will reflect the mood of the nation in that my opponents will be respectful and polite when challenging me and I in turn, also pledge to operate in the same way.”

Former Independent MP Martin Bell OBE helped to launch her official General Election campaign on Saturday. Mr Bell, 81 who was Independent MP for Tatton (1997 – 2001) said: “I served as an Independent MP for four years and was privileged to represent the people not a party. Claire Wright will do the same. I am confident that she will be an outstanding MP.

Martin Bell
Martin Bell
“Claire Wright has forged a reputation as a formidable local government politician in Devon and I am in no doubt that she will do the same in the House of Commons.

“Contrary to popular misconception, independents do have a strong voice in parliament and, such is the current, mass disillusion with mainstream parties, their voice will only become louder.

“By supporting Claire, who has a proven track record of standing up for her constituents and instigating real change, the people of East Devon have, what is likely to be, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change the future of politics in Devon, and indeed, the rest of the UK.”

East Devon has been a Conservative seat since the establishment of the constituency in 1997 and under previous boundaries as far back as 1868.

But she was the runner-up with more than 21,000 votes at the last General Election in 2017 and was the most successful Independent PPC in the country, by more than 10,000 votes.

A local politician of 10 years, Wright has a track record of overturning the odds.

In 2011, she won the seat from the Leader of East Devon District Council, Sara Randall Johnson which she’d held for a decade after 62 per cent of voters turned out to vote.

And in 2013 Wright won 74 per cent of the vote in the Devon County Council elections for the Otter Valley ward, taking over from Roger Giles who stood down after 20 years and winning the largest majority in the South West.

In the 2017 General Election, sitting Conservative MP Hugo Swire – who has been the MP for East Devon since 2001 and has announced that he is not standing again – won 48 per cent of the vote with Wright winning 35 per cent.

As of yet, no Conservative candidate for the seat has been announced, and the Conservative Party have been contacted for comment about who their candidate will be and when they will be selected.

Sir Hugo Swire
Announcing his decision to stand down, Hugo Swire, who has been the MP for the area since 2001, said: “My greatest privilege has been to serve my constituents, regardless of their political allegiance, I am truly grateful for consistently returning me at elections and will continue to serve them to the best of my ability until an election is called.”

In addition to Claire Wright, candidates have also been confirmed by the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats.”

https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/independent-candidate-claire-wright-hopes-3484074