Tuesday, March 03, 2009

There's No Place Like Home: I Know Where You Live

Disgusted of Tonbridge Wells is at it again. On his high horse. With knickers in a twist. About MPs having the option, though no compulsion, to keep their private address(es) private. There are of course anomalies here - candidates who are not MPs but could win seats will need to declare their precise address, or possibly that of their agent come to think of it. (Or are there such anomalies?, see UPDATE for this one). And finding out how closely one of the candidates fits one's "local fetish" will prove more difficult where MPs do put a X in the no publicity box.

Tom Harris has already ripped the piss out of Holier Than Thou of Tonbridge Wells, and now plays a trump card. Though "trump" is not the half of it.

Don't think the result of this vote is particularly shocking.

Can't get that excited about it either way. MPs will be able to volunteer their "private" addresses if they choose to do so.

And it is not beyond the wit of the media or the electorate to find out how "local" an MP may be without needing to know their exact private address.

Iain ends his post with some spurious remark about Sir Fred Goodwin being able to use the same arguments Tom employs. In short that MPs of all ranks and their families can get harrassed, threatened, pestered unreasonably.

So could Fred's. But his address does not have to be in the public domain does it Iain? What is your point?

For the record:

Lib Dem MP John Leech has gone to great lengths to place press stories saying he is moving (back) into the constituency he represents.

But he hasn't done so. He has massaged his real location into a district it's not in. And then massaged it back when he got found out.

He didn't live in the council ward he represented at any point. In fact on the old boundaries he was probably a mile from the nearest point. Oo-er, that'd stop you doing the job wouldn't it?!

After the boundary changes with the next GE he will still not live in his constituency but he will change. Leech's people have a terrible fetish about localism. Tales of addresses of convenience abound. They also run with the old "family man" code when it suits them.

Meanwhile Tony Lloyd MP has lived in the original boundaries of his constituency, actually at the heart of the new one, and a short distance outside it at various times.

But as he doesn't have a fetish with his exact address and he certainly doesn't send out hoax press releases - resulting in press coverage, though sadly suppressed from the online record but I'll scan it one of these days - saying he's re-locating, for purposes of authenticity.

And finally:

The fact that John Leech does not live in and never as an MP has lived in his constituency is not what makes him a piss poor MP. But he is one.

UPDATE 19:43: Division - in interesting new slab view from those resourceful people at MySociety - shows Lloyd voted with majority while Leech did not. Contrary to the other candidates having to disclose point ... doesn't seem to be correct. All candidates get the option.


Anonymous said...

so in which ward does he reside ?

Iain Dale said...

Your ignorance displays itself twice over.

First of all, it's Tunbridge Wells. Tonbridge is a separate town.

Secondly, all company directors have their private addresses published by Companies House. Why should MPs be any different?

Chris Paul said...

Tunbridge Wells ... ever so sorry ... I'll rush to correct that Iain. Confusing Kentish folk. I'm very ignorant. I am very ignorant. And very surry. Your other point - and that about Sir Fred - is utter nonsense. Now read on ...

If MPs are Directors of Companies they'll no doubt choose whether to be listed or not in many of the search sites.

Like UKDAta. Using their good offices/discretion UNTIL THE RULES CHANGE ANY TIME NOW (see link) to allow Directors to quote an address for service instead of their main residential address.

As you could find out yourself if you didn't shoot from the hip all the time this will come in October 2009 and what's more although all Director addresses will still be filed with CH as all candidates' addresses are to be filed with returning offices so-called "vulnerable Directors" will be able to prevent their residential addresses being widely available.

Such Directors can already apply for Confidentiality Orders. The new regs are making the equivalent to this available without a court order.

I make that 1-1. Though I think any reasonable person would agree that spelling Tunbridge Tonbridge is in fact a lesser venal sin, almost not a sin at all, whereas getting hysterical and spreading fibs about reasonable confidentiality arrangements, also available to Company Directors and to all candidates AFAICS not just incumbents ... well that sort of toss is serious.

I'll take your fulsome apology as read Iain.

Chris Paul said...

John Leech lives in Whalley Range ward I believe. Quite close to the old border with Fallowfield ward, although that has retreated under the last LG boundary changes.

South Manchester Reporter carried his bogus story of a move to Chorlton Green at some length, though it is not in the online record AFAICS. There has been no correction/update. Meaning that poor readers and constituents could well believe that the hoaxing scumbag has kept his promise.

Anonymous said...

Slight Correction Chris

(Though you have Dale hoist by his own petard. He has no escape. An apology is now inevitable.)

Directors apply to the Secretary of State under the Companies (Particulars of Usual Residential Address) (Confidentiality Orders) Regulations 2002.

If unsuccessful they can appeal:

5. - (1) An applicant who has received notice under regulation 4 that his application for a confidentiality order has been unsuccessful may appeal to the High Court or the Court of Session on the grounds that the decision -

(a) is unlawful;

(b) is irrational or unreasonable; or

(c) has been made on the basis of a procedural impropriety or otherwise contravenes the rules of natural justice.

They can appeal further only if the Court gives them leave to do so, which is usual.

Chris Paul said...

Cheers me dears.