Yesterday, I spoke to the Welshpool and District Visual Impaired Group. Around 40/50 of them. Very friendly occasion. Three big issues under discussion were all health related. A&E services in Shropshire (and Montgomeryshire), the frustrating delays in bringing a renal dialysis unit to Welshpool, and the proposed closure of a residential EMI unit at Newtown Hospital, all issues that will feature on this blog over the next few weeks. I'm working to develop expertise in all of them. And then someone asked me why on earth I want to be an MP. Iain Dale is asking and answering the same question in today's Telegraph.
Truth is that I cannot think of a job I'd rather do, except perhaps play stand off against the All Blacks - and that's not very likely to happen. At present, I spend most of my time, doing the sort of things I'd expect to be doing if I were to become an MP - but without the pay and expenses! Something to be said for that. In my answer I did explain that an elephant's hide for a skin in essential. Anyone who has a tendency to hot temper, or being cowed before verbal assault should go do something else.
Iain's full page article focused mostly on the public's response to the current furore about expenses, and the disrespect, often merging on contempt, that is currently felt for politicians in general - which is why yesterday's question was asked of me. I can honestly say that I never hear any of this amongst the people I meet, except when I was asking them to vote at the Euro election earlier this year. Perhaps it would change if I were to win. Whatever, it certainly won't change for incumbent MPs until the people have had their say in a General Election - nor should it. But back to the question. Being MP for Montgomeryshire would be a dream realised. Imagine walking into the Palace of Westminster as the representative of the people I have always lived amongst - following in the distinguished footsteps of Clement Davies, Emlyn Hooson and Alex Carlile. Who'd be an MP? I would, please.