What then is the point of voting for him?
Get in Touch with Conor!
What is curious is that on his website, Mr Burns says,
"Conor Burns is the ConservativeMember of Parliament for Bournemouth West, Branksome East and Alderney. He lives in Westbourne in Bournemouth West. He has pledged to be a community-focused MP who works as a voice in Westminster for his constituents, putting them before anything else."
He hypocritically invites you to "Get in Touch with Conor!" and shows a photo of himself on the telephone with his sleeves rolled up in a business-like way. He purports to be seeking the opinions of his constituents on every subject. You are invited to write to him and tell him what you think about the Navitus Bay Wind Farm proposals. Doubtless when you have told him, he will disregard your input because he is not there just to represent you. He is there to impose his superior judgment.
Mr Burns' letter reveals an egregious vanity. He cannot resist boasting about "my friend Mrs Thatcher" - whom in fact he hardly knew, as he was only elected to the House of Commons in 2010, by which time she was retired even from the House of Lords, and was in her declining years. The letter is doubly absurd because in ignoring his voters' wishes he claims to be acting in an "unbiassed" fashion. Yet the issue on which he was refusing to follow his constituents' expressed preference was same-sex marriage, and Mr Burns is a homosexual who is notorious for lobbying for special rights for homosexuals. He has used his influence to get the Home Office to allow immigrants into this country simply on the grounds of their sexual orientation. "Unbiassed" is the last thing anyone could call him.
His letter, dated 30th March 2013, admits that there was little pressure coming from most homosexuals in England for removing the distinction between marriage and a civil partnership. He says it was not a priority for "the gay community", that all-important 1.5% of the population, and they were not "clamouring" for it. He also admits that he had received many letters from his constituents in Bournemouth West opposing the idea and urging him to vote against it. Yet he felt no obligation to represent those voters.
Mr Burns represented only himself. Regarding the letters from his constituents, he has no more sophisticated method of argument than to dismiss their views in the predictable gay way as "hatred and bigotry".
To justify his high-and-mighty attitude, Mr Burns quotes from the 18th-century writer Edmund Burke, whom doubtless he read as a set text when he was studying Politics at Southampton University. This speech of Burke is available in the convenient Penguin pocket volume The Portable Edmund Burke, so quoting it does not indicate very profound learning on Mr Burns' part.
Certainly, gentlemen, it ought to be the happiness and glory of a representative to live in the strictest union, the closest correspondence, and the most unreserved communication with his constituents. Their wishes ought to have great weight with him; their opinion, high respect; their business, unremitted attention. It is his duty to sacrifice his repose, his pleasures, his satisfactions, to theirs; and above all, ever, and in all cases, to prefer their interest to his own. But his unbiassed opinion, his mature judgment, his enlightened conscience, he ought not to sacrifice to you, to any man, or to any set of men living. These he does not derive from your pleasure; no, nor from the law and the constitution. They are a trust from Providence, for the abuse of which he is deeply answerable. Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he sacrifices it to your opinion.
But there are many other things that Edmund Burke said that Mr Burns seems to have overlooked. For instance, "The greater the power, the more dangerous the abuse." That sounds like a good description of the kind of government we now have, that passes laws without any proper mandate from the electorate. "All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent." Plenty of contemporary application there.
And here is Burke giving what could be a remarkably perceptive description of the "gay community":-
But what is liberty without wisdom, and without virtue? It is the greatest of all possible evils; for it is folly, vice and madness, without tuition or restraint.
And finally, The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
I suggest that the good men and women of Bournemouth West get together next year and vote for another MP in the place of Mr Burns, one who does see it as their job to represent the voters and who has read more of Burke than you can find in a pocket digest.