For The Record

As rumoured, George Osborne is one of the high-profile Ministers set to lose his seat if the boundary changes are passed – they’ve yet to be debated in the Commons so we can expect a packed House for that, unlike some other topics where MPs can’t be bothered to attend.

Some of the MPs most affected are:

George Osborne
Hilary Benn
Ed Balls
Nick Clegg
Zak Goldsmith
Caroline Lucas
Vince Cable
Sadiq Khan
Chuku Umunna
Ian Duncan-Smith
Chris Huhne
Nadine Dorries
Tim Farron
Rory Stewart
Liam Byrne

A “senior Tory”, as usual unnamed, said:

“We are not happy about this. There are MPs who gave up a lot to come here and now it looks like they face real fights. Whips have been coming up to us and asking how we are taking this. Not well is the message.”

The MP said it was possible that the changes might be dropped. “This is far more wide-ranging than anyone had thought. It wouldn’t surprise me if this is dropped. They’ll just say it is all too complicated and they’ll come back to it after the election.”

The number of constituencies will be cut from 533 to 502 and the number of MPs from 650 to 600.  The changes formed part of the Coalition manifesto which they agreed after taking office – the LibDems agreeing to support it in return for the referendum on Alternative Voting.  Sour grapes at losing that vote means that some LibDems are now threatening to vote against the changes.  Such reliable partners. 

Another consequence of the reform is that English County lines are once again being blurred by politics: Cornwall and Devon aren’t happy.

You can find out if or how you might be affected HERE.

Conservative Home has an informative article by an elections analyst, which is worth a glance:

These reviews will become more regular. They will now be held every 5 years but there will be further change to electoral law in this Parliament.  Individual voter registration will probably be introduced in two years time. This will I hope reduce abuse in not only voter registration but also postal voting and campaign irregularities. All of these are now rife in many places and make our elections more ‘corrupt’ than in many developing countries.

I’m not sure why he bothered to put the word  ‘corrupt’ in inverted commas; it’s widely acknowledged that postal voting has corrupted the electoral process to a degree never known before in British politics.

Another, or possibly the same, unnamed ‘senior Tory’ source  said (£):

“It has been really difficult to get MPs to focus on the big issues when all they want to know about is whether they’ll still have a seat.  Some of the usual rebels could suddenly find themselves in trouble when they are looking to the party for a new seat or a place in the Lords.”

And that’s it in a nutshell: no real concern about representation of the people or the disregard of natural geographical County boundaries, just a concern for their own skins.

UPDATE 14th: Cameron warns Clegg not to dispute new boundaries

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4 responses to “For The Record

  1. Nice GV, very nice. Was going to comment but you said it extremely well in your last paragraph.

    Have posted a link to the BC and linked to you

  2. Thanks, Mr W. What's the BC?

    ! Edited to add: It's ok, I've woken up now – Boundary Commission.

  3. Perhaps it is worth asking why this is not a boundary review of England, but a review of the boundaries within each of the 9 EU Regions of England.

    Together with the Regions of Scotland, Wales & NI, it makes up the 12 regions of the EU Province of the UK.

    In terms of the MPs who may lose their seats, the EU cares not for the useful idiots, however it is clear from MPs comments that they place their own careers before all else.

  4. Hello IPJ. These boundary changes facilitate regionalisation – as you say, all the better to break us up with. I'm also wondering if someone isn't fomenting all this increased hot air around the WLQ as a distraction. Adding yet another layer of govt via an English Assembly wd play into the hands of the EU – I'm in favour of one but wd rather it was kept on the back-burner until after we've left the EU.