INSIGHT PUBLIC AFFAIRS: Nadine Dorries MP

An incredibly proactive backbencher with a penchant for thinking outside the box and speaking her mind, Nadine Dorries is a gutsy and independent-minded politician.

An active blogger, who offers readers her un-spun opinion and direct critique of those whom she dislikes: she recently labelled someone bloody rude. Known to be light-hearted with a good sense humour, Dorries, a divorcee, jokes that she arouses the suspicion among the wives of men she meets on constituency business.

Brought up in a Liverpool council house, she is the granddaughter of the founder of Everton FC, although her football allegiance lies with Liverpool. Formerly a nurse at Warrington General Hospital and a medical representative for Ethical Contact she left the UK to work in a school in Zambia whilst her then husband ran a copper mine. 1987 saw Dorries set up her own business, Company Kids Ltd, which she later sold to BUPA in 1998 to concentrate on her political career.

In politics she spent three years as an advisor to Oliver Letwin MP before securing selection for the Mid Bedfordshire seat only a month before the 2005 General Election. She defeated eleven shortlisted rivals for the Tory nomination and became Mid Bedfordshire’s first female MP, following a successful campaign in which she wore out a pair of shoes within the first week and won plaudits for her campaign website, the harbinger to her more recent web success via her blog.  

Nadine Dorries’ has a special interest in abortion issues – due largely to her devout Anglican religious beliefs. She has made several attempts to reduce the abortion time limit, the most recent being an amendment to the 2008 Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill. Her entrepreneurial spirit has continued into her political career and she claims that her plan to eradicate the MRSA virus in hospitals – by keeping all laundry on site, banning the wearing of uniforms outside hospitals and restricting visiting – would work. A socially conservative MP, she states a desire to introduce policies to create neighbourly communities where people look after each other.

While she is colourful and exuberant in temperament and ideas, these can sometimes lead to embarrassment. In one of her anti-abortion campaigns, Dorries promoted as reality a supposed urban myth that a foetus, young enough to be aborted under current legislation, once reached out and grabbed the finger of the surgeon operating on the pregnant mother and baby. She hoped this, and subsequent photographic evidence, would prove that a foetus over 20 weeks should be considered ‘human’. The claim was met with much skepticism and derision.

Dorries famously told David Davis to his face that she was transferring her support to David Cameron during the Conservative Party leadership contest. However, her last-minute change of allegiance is unlikely to reward her with a place in a Cameron Government.

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