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General => General Discussion => Topic started by: Emberman on August 09, 2014, 10:17:16 AM


Title: Dominic Raab MP votes very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares.
Post by: Emberman on August 09, 2014, 10:17:16 AM
The website on the link below shows that Dominic Raab Voted very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares,

voted against capping rail fare increases,
voted against capping annual rail fair increases at 1% above inflation and not to ban increases in excess of that limit.
voted against reducing public transport fares, and against reducing VAT on fuel to help motorists and boost the economy.
voted to allow individual rail fares to be increased by more than the amount of the Government's cap on average increases.

Is this fair, when salaries are frozen or hardly rising, in a constituency that largely depends on an efficient and cost-effective transport system to support the local economy, and when the train service for which we pay above inflation fare increases for is so unreliable ? 

Surely our MP should support the constituents who use the service, not the train operator ?   


Title: Re: Dominic Raab MP votes very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares.
Post by: Walker2 on August 09, 2014, 10:52:50 AM
That's the ideology of the free market for you.

Title: Re: Dominic Raab MP votes very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares.
Post by: Emberman on August 09, 2014, 10:55:36 AM
But it can't really be a free market, when there is no alternative train operator, so no competition.

Title: Re: Dominic Raab MP votes very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares.
Post by: mark.hawkins on August 20, 2014, 08:43:09 PM
Was considering voting for the chap next year. But this voting record will make me look a little closer at his wider voting record. I am looking for an MP that represents the community. Not the part whip!

Title: Re: Dominic Raab MP votes very strongly against slowing the rise in rail fares.
Post by: Keith on August 21, 2014, 07:57:16 AM
Quote from: Emberman on August 21, 2014, 12:01:20 AM
Quote from: Emberman on August 20, 2014, 11:54:52 PM
Is it possible to post on the local conservative party websites?  That might be more effective in engaging in active debate.

I could be unjust, but I've gained the impression that Dominic Raab was given the safe seat of Esher because the Conservative party consider him useful.  His priority does not seem to be to support his constituents, and his loyalty appears to be primarily to his party.

What do you expect?!

Raab was one of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office's team of Legal Advisers when he was talent-spotted by Dominic Grieve and joined David Davis' and Grieve's staff in Conservative Central Office.  In the run-up to the 2010 elections the Tories rather bravely adopted a selection system of 'Open Primaries' but when the first victor (a locally-based lady doctor in Devon IIRC) proved so successful, the central party authorities realised that their own favoured candidates might not get a look-in against good local candidates.  They swiftly imposed the discipline that candidates in 'open primaries' had to be on the A-list nominated by themselves.  Raab was one of the A-list candidates from central office permitted to stand in the open primary at Esher.  The primary was therefore 'open' in the sense that anyone from the local community could participate in the selection (an admirable principle for which the Tories deserve praise - it has not been emulated by the other parties), but not 'open' to any Conservative would-be candidate, even to one put forward by the local Esher and Walton constituency Association.

Raab is slightly right of centre (David Davis style).  I think he does quite a good job of getting round the constituency and as far as party allows he is broadly representational in this his first term - in an overwhelmingly Conservative district, even though Esher and Walton Conservative  card-carrying membership is very small and declining (about one-tenth of the subscribing members of Elmbridge's residents' associations, interestingly).  Perhaps they will tell us what the present membership is, for why should it be a secret?  A year ago the daily Telegraph, citing the (rather good) website Conservative Home where, unlike any official party website, you may certainly post messages, wrote of the national figures "there are now 134,000 Tory members, down from over 253,000 during the 2005 leadership contest. The party had earlier this year refused to release the figures amid claims that the number may have fallen below 100,000"

The Conservative Party constitution (which Cameron did not succeed in changing) reveals a highly centralised organisation where the Board - the members of which are not publicly listed last time I asked CCO - has supreme control over everything.  It is reminiscent of the former Soviet Politburo.  In addition to the parliamentary whip system there are whips in local government - perhaps we might be informed who they now are in EBC and SCC.  Moreover Conservative councillors are required by the party to sign up and subscribe to a central association of conservative councillors.  It is in these ways that a very small card-carrying part of the population rules the country with the support of a minority of the population (no party has enjoyed support of more than half the vote for a very long time, and that vote in turn is declining - turnout in 2010 was 65% of eligible voters (  So with 36.4% of the 65.1% turning out to vote, the Conservatives were supported by just 23.7% of the population over voting age. (with the LibDem share of 23% of the vote,  the Coalition rises to a  majority of those voting but still only 37.7% of the population.)

That said, this is politics, Raab is a politician, and he surely has ambitions - which he should be well placed to fulfil, for he is able.  He has not conspicuously allied himself with the Cameron wing; neither has he done much to alienate them.  In his position I would be calculating that my chances of office long term would be more likely to be damaged by going down with Cameron, as contrasted with building a position independent of the current party leader.  He has cultivated media exposure on his own account, and very successfully.  He must have a very good chance of promotion in a future Tory administration - one that might not be led by Cameron.  In a constituency where, realistically, the Conservatives will have a safe seat during our lifetimes, Raab seems to me to be a good deal better than alternatives one could envisage with any realism.  So I'd say, let's work with him.

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