He should, of course, have become Speaker of the House of Commons. That, at least, is what I thought when I voted for Richard Shepherd to be Speaker following the resignation of Michael Martin.
Sir Richard is everything that an MP should aspire to be. He has diligently served his Aldridge-Brownhills constituents since 1979. At a time when Parliament became supine and spineless, he has again and again shown principle and backbone.
That he lost the whip over Europe, because he could see where a single currency was going to end, is a compliment to him.
While many MPs spend their time in Westminster ingratiating themselves with ministers and the front bench, Sir Richard has done as an MP should; holding the executive to account. Perhaps more than anyone I have met in SW1, he understands what Parliament is for.
Knighthoods so often go to Westminster toadies and yes-men. Not in this case, I am delighted to see.
"A revolutionary text ... right up there with the Communist manifesto" - Dominic Lawson, Sunday Times
Printed by Douglas Carswell of 61 Station Road, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex