SOME people have been leaving very nice and supportive messages since I got The Call. Some not so nice, but there you are.
If what follows were to be my political epitaph, however, I could hardly expect anything better. It was posted as a comment last night under the name “Very Much Anonymous”, and you’ll see the reason for that in the last line. I hope one day this particular individual will make him/herself known to me. But in the meantime, whoever you are, thank you.
Tom, I’m very sorry to hear this news.
I’m not a Labour supporter and I won’t be voting Labour at the next election. However, I know that most politicians of any political persuasion genuinely want to do their best to help their constituents and the people of the UK. You exemplify this.
You have, from all the evidence available to me, been a conscienscious and hard-working Minister. You’ve handled a difficult portfolio extremely well and have built up a lot of respect on a personal level within the rail industry. I am sure that the industry’s journals will decry your treatment for weeks to come.
You have been courteous to and respectful of your officials. You ask intelligent questions at the right time and you have a remarkable talent to sense when you are being “fed a line”, be it by officials or by industry figures.
Your blog has opened up the political process to the average citizen more than any other. While Iain Dale and Guido write superb blogs, they don’t have the perspective that you do.
It is my sincere belief that your party will lose the next election by a large margin. However, despite my Conservative sympathies, I distrust large majorities. I sincerely hope that you will continue with both your blog and your devotion to your job and will hold Governments of both parties to account from the back benches.
More than that, after the next election, your party will need a core group of experienced but untainted leaders to pull it out of a very deep hole. You have the potential to go far higher within your party than you have managed to date. Please don’t let this setback discourage you.
Why do I say this?
Because I’ve been working for you in DfT for quite some time. Hence why I’m staying anonymous.