Neil O'Brien is Director of Policy Exchange and blogs regularly for The Telegraph.
Which of the new MPs elected last year have made an impact in Westminster, and in the media? As they find their feet in Parliament, can we spot any patterns emerging? Are new political tribes being formed?
There’s no single idea of what being an effective MP involves. So this piece isn’t about who is doing “well” or “badly” as MPs. Here I’m interested in two things: which of the newbies are making a splash in the media, and which of them are making waves in politics and national policy.
Of course, many people would prefer their MP to focus on quietly working for their constituency, and many MPs in marginal seats have to spend much of their time campaigning at home. So none of what follows is a value judgement on anyone.
We can put some numbers on their media “splash” in a (very) rough-and-ready way. Using the Nexis press database and some intern labour we can see who has been appearing in the newspapers a lot. Of course, not all coverage is good coverage. Some have done better on TV and radio than in the papers. And there is often a trade-off between making noise in the media, and making progress in politics behind the scenes – though some high performing MPs manage to do both.