Frank Field named Parliamentarian of the Year
Frank Field has been named 'Parliamentarian of the Year' at the Spectator Awards.
Introducing Frank, the Editor of the Spectator Fraser Nelson said:
And now, to our final award – parliamentarian of the year, given to the MP who has best exemplified the finest traditions of parliament. And to be honest, our winner could have qualified for this in any of the 40 years he has been in parliament.
He started out as a teacher, he was running the Child Poverty Action Group aged 27 and dedicated himself to fighting poverty throughout his political career – and going wherever his principles took him.
This has meant, at times
• serving as a Labour Cabinet member
• advising David Cameron
• and then becoming perhaps the most effective critic of Universal Credit.
When he speaks, no one can dismiss him as a partisan hack – especially not as his principles led him to resign his party whip this year. A man marked by his decency, integrity, his indefatigability. Politically homeless, but admired across the House.
And he has always used the House: to make speeches, to use its library, to launch campaigns and at the age of 76, causing more trouble for the government (and the Labour Party) than any number of men half his age.
Journalists are not supposed to have political heroes – not living ones anyway – but I will admit that our winner tonight has long been one of mine. And the hero of anyone who believes in parliament, principles and what can be achieved if you put the two together.
I’m delighted to say that our 32nd Parliamentarian of the Year is the MP for Birkenhead, Frank Field.