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Sunday, 11 July 2010

Conservative MP Mark Reckless too drunk to vote in Budget debate

So, less than two months into the new job and the Conservative MP for Rochester & Strood in Kent, Mark Reckless has a reputation for being reckless by name and reckless by nature in the recent Budget debate.

The recent Budget debate, that went on to the early hours of the morning was followed by a vote at around 2.00am in the morning.

However, Mark Reckless MP did not participate in the vote because of his drunken state.

The Daily Mail reports:
Mr Reckless claimed he decided not to take part in the 2.07am vote because of his drunken state.  ‘I thought it would be inappropriate in the circumstances,’ he said.

However, other Tories dispute this version of events and say he was asleep on the terrace during the vote and received an official warning from his party the following day for ignoring the whip.

‘He didn’t decide not to vote - he missed it because he was asleep,’ said one.  ‘It was bad enough him being drunk, but missing the vote was worse in the eyes of the whips. He got a severe rollicking the next morning.’

Obviously Mark Reckless MP was not the only one engaged in drinking.

Mr Reckless, the MP for Roch­ester, Kent, was among the most enthusiastic revellers. At one point, he fell on the floor and had to be helped to his feet.
Later, he struggled to open a bar door, repeatedly slamming it on his toe, apparently unaware his foot was in the way.
Although Mark Reckless MP wasn't happy to accept he was at fault in fact he went on to blame the Whips not his own inability to say no to more alcholic drink, or perhaps being slightly more grown up and sticking to soft drinks, tea or coffee or even staying in his office and doing some work?
Mr Reckless, 39, said the Tories’ decision to issue a strict three-line whip on the late-night debate - which meant all Conservative MPs had to stay to the end to vote - was partly to blame. ‘It was a bit like a lock-in,’ he said.
I find this statement by Mark Reckless MP at best merely childish and at worst pathetic from someone who is now a Member of Parliament.

If Mark Reckless cannot control his own actions and drink in moderation when it comes to staying late for the votes that go on into the dead of night then I suggest next time he excuses himself.

The Budget was an important aspect of the Coalition Government's strategy to tackle the enormous debt mountain left behind by the Labour Party, therefore all MPs should have taken this seriously and getting drunk in the bar is not the example we expect.

At least Mark Reckless MP does not intend to claim the £130 taxi fare back on his expenses - one sensible decision he has made!

He was not the only MP whose conduct came under scrutiny on that Tuesday evening, fellow Conservative MP Sheryll Murray also had a little memory loss.

South East Cornwall MP Sheryll Murray, who had also been drinking on the terrace, was reportedly involved in an exchange with a Commons doorkeeper who asked if she needed help when encountering her in a corridor.
'I’d had a couple of glasses of wine on the terrace but I wasn’t rude to anybody. If I had been rude I would apologise.

'Somebody did say, “Are you all right?” But I don’t remember being under the influence of alcohol.

‘There is a lesson to be learned from this: You don’t drink at all on the terrace.’

The following day, a Conser­vative official apologised to the doorkeeper.
What this shows is that perhaps the bars in the House of Commons should close at 11pm and that on the few opportunities the House sits late for debates with votes MPs should not engage in late night drinking!

MPs cannot go on about loutish behaviour in our town centres each weekend when they can clearly not behave sensibly themselves and drink in moderation on an odd late night when they should be working.

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