Maajid Nawaz: Vetting voters for MP meetings 'further alienates' Brits

17 October 2021, 15:43

By Seán Hickey

Rolling out a range of conditions to grant people appointments with local MPs runs the risk of making politics 'further inaccessible' for ordinary people.

Maajid Nawaz was reflecting on proposals from the Home Secretary that constituents may in future need to book appointments to see their MPs at surgeries.

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"If these appointments to see MPs for surgeries are to be booked in advance, one imagines, online, then I do wonder." He noted.

"If you have to book an appointment in advance to see your MP, are there barriers to entry at that point? Do you have to have a certain level of qualifications...to get approved to go in to see an MP?"

Maajid made the case then that cases such as vaccination status could be considered before someone is granted access to their MP.

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"If that's the kind of checking that's going to be done...then I think we're going to have a problem. You're making MPs further inaccessible."

Maajid clarified that "booking appointments itself is relatively uncontroversial if it remains simply as name, contact details, you're in," but if things such as party allegiance, work status or vaccination status were to be considered then "that further alienates people from their politicians."

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"You end up with this untouchable, unassailable, inaccessible, all-powerful, executive government elite that even end up out of touch with the common people because common people can't even get in to see them."

He concluded by stating that "Sir David would not be happy with that kind of scenario I've just painted."

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