Weirdly, there's an article in today's Telegraph online attacking me – and other Eurosceptic MPs – for having large majorities and being Eurosceptic. I plead guilty, M'Lud.
The article suggests that being a Eurosceptic is a wild indulgence. Something that only MPs in "safe seats" can afford to do. Those in marginal seats, apparently, know better.
How odd. When I won my marginal seat from Labour in 2005, it was by a highly marginal 920 votes. In 2010, that figure increased to over 12,000.
During those five years, I fought – and sometimes won - all sorts of local and national campaigns as the local MP. But I can't help thinking that one of the reasons the 2010 result was so much better than 2005 owed something - not everything, but something - to the fact that I made it clear I want Britain to pull out of the European Union.
Or look at it from a Labour angle. What was it about the outspoken, Eurosceptic Gisela Stuart, MP for Edgbaston, that helped her buck the anti-Labour trend at the last general election?
It is always helpful to have advice from folk who have never won an election. It is not always sensible to take it.
Anyone wanting to impart advice on how to win votes should start by recognising that in an age of anti-politics, authenticity is everything. To suggest that one should decide what to say on Europe, and how loud to say it, merely to maximise votes is the very definition of inauthentic.
I bang on about Europe because I believe Britain would be better off out.
So there it is. Of those names selected in the Private Members ballot this morning, most of the top half dozen names out of the hat are sound Eurosceptics.
James Wharton MP, who came top, will now present a Bill for an In / Out referendum on Friday July 5th.
Perhaps God is a Eurosceptic, eh? (WARNING: for humorless lefty pundits, that was a joke).
The Conservatives will unite behind the Bill. So, too, will the country - 82 percent of whom want an In / Out vote. Will Ed Miliband?
Perhaps we will now see the Westminster churnalists focus on "Labour splits", as and when MPs from all sides make it clear they back this Bill?
I look forward to columnists writing about the kind of Euro obsessives who still refuse, point-blank to give the voters a say.
Will the Bill become law? I know all about the sort of guerrilla tactics that can be used to stop this sort of Bill. But crucially, if enough MPs turn up in support, a Private Bill can get the all important second reading vote.
Just imagine if our Parliament was to vote in favour of a referendum on our continued membership of the EU!
But will they vote that way? I reckon the numbers are looking surprisingly tight. There are decent, democratic MPs on all sides of the House.
There are an awful lot of Lib Lab MPs in whose seats a great multitude just voted UKIP. Fancy denying those folk a referendum?
"Why not have a Europe referendum now?" a constituent asked. He has a point.
Every continent around the world is growing - apart from Europe. Our exports with the rest of the world are rising sharply - but falling with Europe.
Being run by Brussels has left us less happy, less democratic and less free.
So let's quit! I agree. I want out. And most of the folk who read this blog will too, I'd reckon.
So why not now?
You and I might have made up our minds, but it is what the whole country thinks that counts. And the reality is that one in five folk are still undecided.
The numbers are still close enough to see our lead whittled away during a ferocious, Brussels-funded scare campaign.
To be sure of leaving the EU, we must win over the undecideds - the kind of folk who say "why can't we stay as part of a looser, decentralised Europe?"
What will win the undecides over? If every effort was made to achieve that looser, decentralised arrangement. And it failed. When that happens the position of the Outers becomes unassailable.
Be clear, it will fail. It's not just that the Eurosystem won't give us meaningful concessions. The Europhile Whitehall mandarinate are not seriously trying.
With every set of trade figures, the case for withdrawal grows stronger.
As I replied to my constituent: "I've a four year old daughter. I believe her life chances - and the life chances of every four year old - will be much better if she grows up in an independent Britain, not a failed-state called Europe. I am willing to wait until she is six or seven if that's what it takes to guarantee we leave".
Be patient. We are winning.
"What would David Cameron have to do in this Parliament" a journalist asked me "for you Eurosceptics to say "Yes, that'll do, thanks?"
For several years, I have been agitating for the Prime Minister to offer an In / Out referendum. He's now offering one. Cameron deserves much more credit for being the first Prime Minister in a generation to offer us the chance to vote to quit the EU. Not even Mrs Thatcher came anywhere close!
So, I can tick that off my list.
I have also been pressing for the legislation to be enacted in this Parliament. Yesterday the government published the EU referendum Bill. To be sure, the Bill cannot be brought in in government time without Mr Clegg's say so. But the chance to engineer a vote on it is now ours for the making.
As a member of Better Off Out, who has been campaigning for an In / Out referendum, I feel I can now say "Yes. Thanks, Prime Minister. On matters Europe, that's what I wanted".
Having woken up to the UKIP insurgency, many in SW1 want to respond by beefing up policy. I am happy to beef up all sorts of policy. I even wrote a book about it. But if we want to win back support outside Westminster, the thing that needs beefing up most of all is our plausibility – and not merely on matters European.
I know that many colleagues in the Commons read this blog. Here's what we should do to beef up our plausibility on the Europe question:
Will Ed Miliband? That is the question.
"What don't you like about your job as an MP?" I was recently asked in front of a classroom full of cheerful children.
I think I waffled something about late night sittings. Or perhaps I made a quip about Prime Minister's Question Time.
Anything to avoid telling them about the one thing I really do not like; when the state forcefully takes a child away from their family – and desperate mum and dad, or granny, come to see me about it.
I never feel so hopeless or so out of my depth. I have no way of knowing all the facts. I am not a lawyer and I certainly cannot second guess a court.
On the one hand, failure to remove a child that was at risk of harm would be too awful to contemplate. And yet, how hideous it would be to forcefully take a child away from its mother, and put it up for adoption, on the basis of an error. Are we not, in some cases, removing children from their families simply because their life chances might be better in an adoptive family?
"But that does not happen!" I have for months been telling myself. "The experts consider all the facts, and make sensible, balanced decisions." Really? In which other area of public administration are mistakes never made?
Can we really have confidence in our family courts? I am starting to wonder. I've seen too many cases that raise disturbing questions.
Perhaps part of the problem is that family courts are shrouded in secrecy. I fear that we do not see when things go wrong. And because we cannot see if mistakes are made, what chance is there that they get put right?
In Denmark, children are only very rarely separated completely from their mother. Of course those that need to be, are taken into care. But rarely are they formally put up for adoption against the wishes of the mother. Perhaps we need to learn from that approach?
1. Agree with them about Europe. Let's face it, Britain would be better off out. You almost have to be a career politician, or other kind of weirdo, not to see it.
We should not only push ahead for that elusive referendum. I'm making it clear that I want Britain to leave the EU – and I'd advise colleagues to vote accordingly at every opportunity in the Commons.
2. Quit trying to "deal with" .... and govern: UKIP did well not simply because of Europe. I sense it is part of a revolt against a bogus, inauthentic politics, which we've had in this country since Tony Blair and triangulation came along.
Instead of asking what they need to say to "deal with" things, we MPs need to set out, in clear, unequivocal terms, what we are going to do. Hey, party chiefs could even write a book in that vein called something like, The Plan?
3. Modernise: No, I am not suggesting we mess around with A lists or the open-neck look.
But the fact is that the centre right does need to do much more to widen its electoral appeal. The trouble is that we have had almost precisely the wrong kind of modernisation; inward looking, centralising, philosophy free, alien to our core supporters.
The centre right in this country could be an awesome electoral force. In the age of the internet, it has never been easier to build mass membership movements. We live in a country where unlimited choice and self-selection are becoming a cultural norm. So, in order to make our candidates representative of the country, quit imposing shortlists and hold open primaries instead.
People yearn for frankness and honesty in politics. So rather than mark the cards of those in SW1 with the character to speak up, give them a proper say.
Despite what all the clever clogs in Westminster told us, it turns out there is a market for small state, free market, Euroscepticism after all. Realise that, and we can gain a share of it.
There wasn't any apathy on the menu last night at our "Fish & Chip" supper in Holland Public Hall.
Over 120 local people listened to our discussion about the way that the internet is changing the world.
Traditional, stuffy Tories? Hardly. Questions ranged on everything from 3D printing to the impact of the internet on political parties.
Above all, it was great fun!
Oh. And the paper work has still to be finalised, but it looks like we had around 40 new members join up. If only the party would move forward with iMembership, it could be even more.
We need to Spotify politics. Urgently.
For many local mums and dads in my part of Essex, affordable child care is a massive issue.
That's why minister Liz Truss' new ideas on child care are so important. Forget Europe or potholes for a moment. What if we could make good quality child care a lot more affordable to many more people?
"Easy!" cry the government-must-do-everything brigade. "Get government to pay for it".
The trouble is that government does not have any money. It only has other people's money. Raising taxes even higher in one part of Clacton to pay for child care in another part is not a credible answer.
Why not help those who provide child care instead? Why not give the professionals more control over how they do what they do best?
At the moment, those providing care for two year olds are required to make certain that there is one adult carer for every four children.
Fair enough, you might think. But in Holland and Ireland, there is one adult for every six. Are Dutch or Irish toddlers really less well cared for? Not if their subsequent performance in school is anything to go by. Must a 4:1 ratio be set in stone, always and everywhere?
The government is seeking to bring our child care into line with what the Dutch and the Irish do – although, you would hardly know that if you only listened to some of the silly attacks on what Liz Truss is proposing (see this particularly batty article by Polly Toynbee as an example).
Liz also wants to simplify the jumble of different qualifications that carers have. Again, I think this is sensible, and will help ensure higher standards.
What Liz is trying to do could really help families in my part of Essex. Stick to your guns, Liz! Don't let some of the hysterical attacks on your common sense ideas put you off.
.... these are some of the changes I believe Britain desperately needs.
1. Real bank reform: Five years after the banks went bust, costing taxpayers billions, nothing has really changed. We need a clear legal distinction between money paid ino banks as a deposit, and money paid in as a loan.
As well as safeguarding customers' money, this Bill would prevent banks issuing unlimited credit in the good times - leading to bust and bad times.
2. A Great Repeal Bill: Despite the talk of deregulation, little has happened. Too many wealth creators need to seek permission from officialdom to produce wealth.
Crowd sourcing a Bill would allow a massive, game-changing repeal of intrusive laws, and winding down of agencies that generate the redtape.
3. Political reform: The reform agenda seemed to die with AV. So how about a simple Bill allowing local parties to involve every local resident when selecting their parliamentary candidate?
Local party associations would have to provide the returning officer with half a dozen names from the shortlist and a few hundred quid to cover the cost. The returning officer would then include an extra ballot paper on the day of the local poll. Simple, straight forward, zero extra cost to taxpayer.
4. Energy rethink: What if energy companies were free to produce energy at a price that customers were willing to pay? Instead we have a corporatist racket posturing as an energy market. Producers produce in compliance with targets designed to control the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.
It is a disgrace that poorer families in my constituency are priced out of heating their homes so that rich people in London can feel good about themselves because they believe they are saving the planet. They aren't.
5. Tax transparency: How about a law requiring the state to send each of us a breakdown of how it spends our money?
6. Legal rights for parents: Every mum and dad should have a legal right to request and receive control of their child's share of local authority education funding. If state officials are unable to provide parents with a school place that they are happy to accept, why not let folk take their money and give it to a school that can?
7. An In / Out referendum Bill: For too long, mandarins in Whitehall have defined our relationship with Europe. Look at the mess they have made of it. It is time for the people to decide.
Bring forward a Bill - and if MPs vote the Bill down, at least the electorate will get to see where sitting MPs stand on one of the defining issues of our time.
We need a Queen's Speech that demonstrates that ministers, not mandarins, are in charge. For too long, this administration has given the impression that it has been captured by the civil service. "The Lib Dems won't agree" has become a catch all excuse not to do things.
It is the Sir Humphreys and the Sir Jeremys that are the real roadblock to reform. We need a Queen's Speech that puts them in their place. I fear instead that they might have written most of it.
Whether or not Britain should remain a member of the European Union is one of the biggest public policy questions of the day.
It has enormous implications; do we remain part of a sclerotic block or trade openly with the world? Will we be free to elect our own government, to determine public policy for us – or are we to contract decision making out to Brussels?
How we answer the Europe question will not only help define us as a country. It will influence the ability of our children and grand children to live better, more prosperous lives.
So it's not just big. Or even BIG. It is bigger that the career of any single here-today-gone-tomorrow politician. Of greater long term consequence than this – or indeed any one - government.
Economic forces reshaping the world around us mean that the Europe question - as opposed to Europe's share of global GDP - is only going to get bigger.
There are some people in all three parties who honestly believe that we should remain members of the EU – with all that that entails. And then there are MPs, like me, who believe that Britain should quit the EU. Both are honourable positions to take.
But for too long, too many of those in SW1 have equivocated. On perhaps the greatest macro issue of our age, they have sought refuge in wordplay to avoid coming down one way or the other.
The SW1 gang have sought succour from pollsters and pundits, who provide them with every conceivable excuse not to draw the obvious conclusion. It will no longer do.
Europe matters electorally. And it boils down to In or Out. I have spelt out where I stand on Europe - O-U-T.
Soon everyone in SW1 will have to decide on which side of the question they stand.
"A revolutionary text ... right up there with the Communist manifesto" - Dominic Lawson, Sunday Times