What on earth was Nadine Dorries thinking? Soon after being liberated from the jungle, she kindly agreed to be interviewed by me for Radio Four’s Week in Westminster and explain her rationale. The show broadcast at 11am and you can listen to the whole thing here, but I thought CoffeeHousers may be interested in Nadine Dorries’ quotes as she raises interesting points about politics in general.
Appearing on ITV’s I’m A Celebrity, she says, was the first time she had taken time off from Westminster – while many of her colleagues sneak off the whole time. She singled out the ex-Chief Whip, Andrew Mitchell:-
“What I’ve missed from parliament is three sitting days and no legislation whatsoever. And while Andrew Mitchell was commenting that he didn’t give me permission, he was making those comments from his holiday in Antigua. Half of the parliamentary party was abroad while I was in the jungle… Many MPs take many weeks of the year away, and I’ve never taken any.”
She says she has personally taken a kicking in the press but the party has not been damaged. Some 10m people watched the show and many of them may had their idea of a Tory MP challenged by what they saw:-
“Twice as many people have submitted Google searches for Nadine Dorries as have done for David Cameron. Those… came from areas like Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle. Areas that don’t normally search the names of Conservative MPs.”
Q: But all they find is you eating some strange came food
“Do you know what: does that matter? We have quite a precious impression of ourselves in Westminster and we do expect people to look to Westminster to find out what MPs are like. May be cl dturn tat around Instead of expecting the public to look at us, we go to where the public are. That’s what I did. If people discovered that a Conservative MP may not have been born with a silver spoon in their mouth and gone to a public school, that might just be a first step.”
And how does she expect to be welcomed in the other reality TV studio: the House of Commons?
“My researcher is now gather gathering together the comments made by MPs while I’ve been away. I’d be very interested to discover those MPs who have made comments, how many of them have MPs have taken their own little jollies abroad since they became MPs. And how often they’ve taken them. Not of course that I will be using that information. But I can also guarantee it will be the sycophants and the Cameroons who have made the comments, those who will be doing No10’s bidding. But it doesn’t really bother me, and it never has. If I did, and if I didn’t have a thick skin I would not be a working-class female here in Westminster.”
Here’s the audio:-
More Spectator for less. Stay informed leading up to the EU referendum and in the aftermath. Subscribe and receive 6 issues delivered for just £6, with full web and app access. Join us.