The Secret MP #1

by The Secret MP on April 11, 2013

The Secret MP

You can call me Keith.

Though that’s not my real name.

And I am a Liberal Democrat MP.

There I’ve said it.

I have been a Lib-Dem MP for a few years now. Loyal and trustworthy. I can’t tell you my constituency, but I will say that it has the same mix of happy and sad, privileged and put-upon, strivers and skivers as everywhere else.  Unemployment is average, we boast no internationally famous football teams and the economy is as dead here as it is everywhere else.

I think I work hard. I strive to try to do the right thing, I haven’t missed a single surgery since I was elected, I try to vote in the best interests of the country and I pursue my work on the bank benches diligently.  And I was once Vice-Chair of the All-Party Friends of Krygysztan Group. I think I’m a damned good MP, but, let’s be honest, my majority suggests that I’m tolerated rather than loved, and that come the next election, if things go as badly as they look at the moment, I could be back in the real world.

Will I be happy about that?

Well, that is exactly the same question I was asked by Ray, Bobby and Charlie, when I met them at the recent reunion of the Westminster Lib-Dem Silver Tongue Cavaliers Class of 1993.

‘You’re fucked,’ they told me and I dutifully spouted the party line in response – ‘it will all come right in the end.’ I replied  ‘you’ll see. We’re making the difficult decisions at a very difficult time.’

‘You’re still fucked,’ they said, and then they suggested that I write for their blog. ‘You can be anonymous,’ they assured me, ‘which means you can use swear words and say what you really think.’

I told them I’d consider it and yesterday morning I decided to take them up on their offer.

Why yesterday morning? Thatcher, of course. Why has anyone of my generation done anything?

It should have been a normal day at the end of the Easter recess – morning surgery, then the afternoon in the constituency office, then pick the kids up from school before an evening in front of the telly (new series of Mad Men, marvellous). But, no, Parliament had been recalled – why? Were we at war? Had the North Koreans pressed the kamikaze button? More riots?  Had Clegg decided to pull the plug on the coalition? No, we were being recalled to pay tribute to Margaret Hilda Thatcher.

When I heard that news I groaned – I mean, I spent my formative years with Glaswegian Trotskyites shouting for her to be ‘out, out, out.’ I told my wife, that I would lay low, pretend I had very important constituency business and wait until the furore was over.

Fat chance.

At 6.30am, the call came from the Whip’s Office – I’d ignored the calls at 5.58 and 6.15.

‘Just reminding you to be in the Chamber for the Tributes to Margaret Thatcher at 2.30 this afternoon.’

‘Margaret Thatcher,’ I said groggily, ‘but she was a wanker.’

There was a pause in the conversation.

‘Keith, I don’t think you can call Margaret Thatcher a wanker.’

‘What. Why?’

‘You can call Tony Blair a wanker, or even, in the privacy of your own home, George Osborne. But you can’t call Margaret Thatcher a wanker. It doesn’t even sound right. It sounds weird.’

‘Well what can I call her then?’

‘You can call her a towering figure of the twentieth century, whose strength and political will helped us through difficult times.’

‘I can’t say that.’

‘Yes, you can.’

‘But it’s bollocks. She was a wanker.’

‘See you at 2.30.’

What could I do?

I’ve long given up hope of a place in government: I am known by those in the Whips Office as one of  ‘The Weebles.’

I’ve become quite proud of it – every now and again, me and my fellow Weebles, there are about six of us, get together have a few too many in the Sports and Social Bar and start to giggle about the prospect of rebellion. There have been a quite a few ultimatums sounded after the fifth round – ‘if he reneges on tuition fees we’ll rebel. Yes?’ But we didn’t.

‘If he supports the NHS Bill we’ll rebel. Yes?’  But we let that pass through as well.

It was the same with Police Commissioners, VAT, Welfare, Housing Benefit, The bedroom tax – we’ve drawn more lines in the sand than a referee at a beach volleyball contest – but like good Weebles, we wobble, but we don’t fall down. What we do is we get hauled in to the Leaders Office and reminded that Nick is doing all he can to save us by making the difficult decisions and that dissent is the last thing he needs. And we bow our heads and apologise and assure them that we were only joking and it was all out of context and that it won’t happen again and repeat the mantra that the Lib-Dems have ensured that a million people are no longer paying any tax or whatever the figure is.

Before going back to Westminster to pay tribute to the Blessed Margaret I call in at my Constituency Office – which is situated in the main market town. I’ve got a massive office in the old Woolworth’s. Emblazoned across the front are the words – Keith X Your Local MP. Today when I arrive, Shirley my octogenarian Office Manager is scrubbing some graffiti off the front window.

‘Same as usual?’ I ask her.

‘Not quite,’ she tells me brightly, ‘today it was Keith X is a Bourgeois Imperialist Fascist Pig-Dog.’

‘Oh,’ I say. I never got that when Charlie was Leader.

Damn the coalition and damn Margaret bloody Thatcher, there I’ve said it. And it is at this point that I decide to give Charlie East-West a ring.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Charlie_East_West April 11, 2013 at 8:14 pm

Dear Secret MP,

I am glad you are finally on board with us. A brave move, but, remember – what goes on tour, stays on tour.

Our discretion is everything.


George_East April 11, 2013 at 8:17 pm

And may I too welcome you to our blog and may I also add, you really are fucked.


Ray_North April 11, 2013 at 9:58 pm

Keith! What are you like!?!

Welcome. We look forward to some inside information dirt and scandal!


Alex w April 12, 2013 at 8:33 am

Thanks for the honest and sometimes amusing article, is it a hoax is it real? A salute you weeble but at somepoint it might be fun to get a price for holding the line.


Charlie_East_West April 12, 2013 at 1:52 pm

It took us a few weeks and plenty of free whisky to pursuade him.


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