Often in the press is the silly argument that all politicians are remote or out of touch. As they have to reapply for their jobs every five years and, in our healthy democracy, are scrutinised by a free press, I’m never very impressed by the crude claim that democratically elected and accountable people are detached.
In fact this argument is more than silly, it is dangerous. Used by extremists throughout history – the Nazis used it before they burned down the German Parliament – it is necessary for fringe and extreme groups to stoke fear and distrust before seizing power.
Well I can’t speak for other constituents in other parts of Britain, but what I can say is that our MP, John Hayes, is far from out of touch. He lives where he represents, is seen regularly at local events, and takes up numerous cases or causes, is to his great credit.
Having completed my work experience when a Spalding school boy in his office I know that on a single day recently he supported a charity in Spalding, met constituents in Crowland, and on the same day was at a community event in Deeping St James and an event in Market Deeping celebrating Armed Forces Week.
All the more remarkable given that I happen to know that day too he visited an elderly lady in Holbeach.
Quite simply Mr Hayes works like a Trojan for us. So when I hear people run down our democracy by moaning about the people they elect, I say: “You can claim what you like about politicians but our MP is a man of the people – simply the best.”