THIS WEEK’S BIG QUESTION: How do you lobby New Labour MPs?

A survey has revealed a hostile attitude towards lobbying freebies among new Labour MPs

A survey has revealed a hostile attitude towards lobbying freebies

among new Labour MPs

John Healey

Labour MP for Wentworth

’New Labour takes a harsh line over freebies, sleaze and illicit

payments. There is a challenge for the lobbying industry to disassociate

itself from that. As long as the link between lobbying and freebies

continues it will be much more difficult. Lobbying in itself is seen by

Labour as part of the democratic process. There is no reason why Labour

should be hostile to it.’

Pamela Taylor

Water Company Association

’Face-to-face. If you want to talk to them and be successful. So far,

they have welcomed contact which has been relevant to them, and they’ve

been receptive. It’s a mistake to send a general letter, written on the

letter-heading of your PR consultancy. IfLabour’s attitude encourages

people to be open and above board then that is a good thing.’

Ann Rossiter

Fishburn Hedges

’If you are going in to see a Labour MP you have got to be armed with a

cogent argument, not a bottle of wine. Lobbyists with party contacts,

who understand the mentality of the party, will be at an advantage

because of the historical mistrust of lobbying. Lobbyists will have much

more of an advisory role with clients, on how to make approaches

themselves and how to present their arguments.’

Andrew Gifford


’With a majority this size, and with the Opposition in disarray, most of

our emphasis as a public affairs consultancy has to be in the research

and intellectual background that we can put into developing policies

with our clients. Key audiences are likely to be more focused away from

Parliament and into government departments, the media, academia and

grass roots campaigns.’

Simon Crine


’New or old, most Labour MPs know that lobbying is a two way


They know that we have to represent our clients’ interests in the

everyday decisions of government, they want to know what our clients are

really thinking. As long as we base our arguments on facts we will be

listened to. You can’t make it up.’

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