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Monday, August 06, 2012

Family friendly

The resignation of Louise Mensch as as MP for Corby and East Northamptonshire has come as a bit of a shock, but her reasons for going are familiar ones in the world of politics.

Frankly, being an MP or any kind of full-time politician is not conducive to family life. Parliament is littered with the debris of failed marriages and broken relationships.

Not many MPs though have a substantial private income as a best selling writer, and a husband based in New York, whose job is to manage well-known rock bands. In the circumstances I am surprised she was able to hold on this long.
I suspect that she was expecting a bit more 'influnce' than any back bench MP ever really has. Council leaders have much more influnce on day to day life and backbench MPs become just advocates for their electorate with people who can make real decisions. I think it is very bad for her voters that she got bored with the slog so quickly - she should have been able to see that being an MP would be at odds with her lifestyle before standing - it comes over to me as someone who thought it would be 'fun' but found out the truth and is using 'family' as an excuse. As you rightly say, anyone who wants to stand for parliament could (and should)look at the pressures it puts on home an family before standing.
Isn't about time that Nick Clegg spent more time with his family?
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