December 11 2013 Latest news:
By John Elworthy , The Editor
Saturday, September 8, 2012
HIS own MP Jim Paice, 63, might well be too old for Cameron’s Government but ex MP Sir Graham Bright, 70, is now Tory candidate for Cambridgeshire police commissioner.
Sir Graham beat off two other contenders at a resumed hustings following the surprise decision of police authority independent member John Pye, previously selected as the Tory choice, to stand down. Mr Pye felt the pressure on him to join the party, declined, and walked.
Now the party has turned to what most would consider a safe pair of hands with Sir Graham, who lost his Luton Parliamentary seat in 1997, beating former county council leader Shona Johnstone and Councillor Daren Tysoe to the nomination.
Sir Graham’s website offers his views on the £70,000 a year police commissioner role which will be contested in November.
“I have enormous experience in public service and have represented people’s views and aspirations and addressed their fears and concerns,” he said. “This is the essence of the role.”
He added: “Whether in politics, business, or voluntary organisations, I am always ready to speak up for what is right. If there is an injustice I will take it to the very top.
“In Parliament I successfully introduced two Private Members Bills aimed at protecting young people.”
In Parliament he was private secretary to John Major and has told Cambs Conservatives his strengths also include dealing with the media.
“This role will attract the attention of the media,” he said. “They will dig deep and demand answers on the spot!
“I have experience in being interviewed by the best and sometimes most aggressive journalists. Some of my tasks have been - World at One, Six o’clock News, News at Ten, Newsnight, Today programme as well as chat shows and writing articles for national and local newspapers,”
Cambs county councillor Steve Tierney had earlier blogged that he “had no problem with Sir Graham. He seems a very nice man, he’s what you’d call a political big beast and he’s got a plethora of experience for the role.
“On paper, he’s probably the best candidate. But in the first selection meeting I attended where we whittled the six candidates down to a shorter shortlist of three, I didn’t vote for him.
“The reason was that he was too dry, I didn’t detect any passion for the role.”
Defeated rival Cllr Johnstone tweeted tonight her “congratulations to Sir Graham Bright who is the Conservative candidate”.