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Marcus Jones MP answers ConHome's Twenty Questions for the Class of 2010

Here is the latest in our series of Twenty Questions with members of the Class of 2010...

Jones Marcus Marcus Jones was elected MP for Nuneaton with a majority of 2,069.

1. What is your earliest political memory? The 1987 General election.

2. Complete the sentence: “I’m a Conservative because… I believe in the virtues, of freedom of choice, personal responsibility, a smaller state and the creation of a culture of enterprise.”

3. Who is your political hero and why? Winston Churchill  A fantastic statesman who showed such strength in times of such adversity.

4. When did you decide you wanted to become an MP? Other than it being a distant ambition, when the Nuneaton candidate (Simon Rouse) stood down in 2008.

5. What is your reading material of choice? The Times and The Telegraph.

6. Who is your favourite political interviewer/presenter on TV or radio? Patrick Burns (Political editor BBC West Midlands) - regardless of subject he is a gentleman.

7. If you could run any government department, which would it be and why? At present Communities and Local Government. This is based on my experience as a councillor and my conviction that Government interference, the plethora of targets and middle-men have actually bloated Local Government to the extreme. In some cases services have deterioriated at a time when the cost to the council tax payer has soared. This has been due more to Government diktat rather than local councillors who have been caught in a web of satisfying Government and auditors rather than their own electorate. I think that in the main, Eric Pickles and team are actually setting about the task of addressing these issues in a very expeditious and positive fashion.

8. Which non-Conservative politician do you most admire? Paddy Ashdown - for his achievements in Bosnia in the 1990s.

9. Who would you least want to get stuck with in a House of Commons lift? Arthur Scargill.

10. If you were in the US, would you be a Republican or a Democrat? Republican.

11. What do you enjoy doing to unwind and relax? Socialising, spending time with my familiy, watching Coventry City (that's not usually relaxing though) and angling if I get time.

12. What is your favourite book? I should quote a novel by Nuneaton author George Eliot, however It's the play The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare - another fine Warwickshire subject.

13. What is your favourite film? I am not really a film buff but probably The Italian Job.

14. What is your favourite music? Anything with a good tune.

15. What would be your ideal meal and where would you eat it? Fillet steak or rack of lamb (well cooked, ie rare) with Gratin au dauphinois and a nice glass of Merlot - at home or at any good resturaunt.

16. What is your favourite holiday destination? Cyrpus.

17. What do you most want to achieve during your first term in Parliament? Be an excellent constituency MP and be recognised for that by my constituents.

18. Tell us one interesting, unusual or surprising fact about yourself. Many years ago, I had for several years a summer job at Silverstone racing circuit - on several occassions I drove around the circuit in a Sherpa Van (not quite like Nigel Mansell at that time) and at several Grand Prix I painted the white lines on the grid.

19. Tell us one interesting, unusual or surprising fact about your constituency. Mary Whitehouse (the television campaigner) was born in Nuneaton.

20. Share with us your most amusing story or favourite anecdote from the campaign trail. Following a GENEVA canvassing session, I was asked to call a lady in the constituency. I called the lady in question, and her first words were "I don't like the look of you, I certainly won't be voting for you". The lady then went off on a 10-minute tirade, telling me what was wrong with the country. After listening I sensed that I would not persuade the lady, so very politely I thanked her for taking my her call and asked her if she wanted to talk about any other issues; when she declined the offer, we ended the conversation. On the Saturday before the election I was out campaigning in Nuneaton town centre and a lady approached me. Her first words were "I was that lady who told you on the phone that I did not like the look of you and would not vote for you". "Well." she said, "I have been thinking and you're not as bad as I thought and I'll be voting for you next week". I must have done something right!!!

> Previously: John Glen MP


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