When Sally Met John, She Was Tory

sally+bercowThere is a myth put about that John Bercow’s supposed shift to the left is a result of him falling under the spell of a Labour supporting girlfriend who he subsequently married.  Granted it is a better explanation than, for example, he is an unprincipled opportunist focused on self-advancement at any price who will do and say anything to further his career.  If he can spin that it is love that made him jettison now inconvenient positions he held previously, all the better…

The truth is that when Bercow met Sally Illman she was a Tory activist, their relationship was encouraged by Julian Lewis MP (he was best man at their wedding). In reality her political history is almost as interesting as her husband’s past.  In 1993 she spoke at the Conservative Party conference taking a commendably hard line on freedom of the press, telling Tory delegates

‘All of these stories should be known in a mature democracy. None would have been published under a privacy law . . . To gag the press by cumbersome statute would be wrong, damaging to the press, insulting to readers’ intelligence and harmful to democracy. It would be a foolish error of political judgement and we would pay a hefty price.’

Quite right.  Wonder if she will still hold to that view after tomorrow…


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