At first blush, it may seem strange that I am focussing today on Andrea Jenkyns MP [Con, Morley and Outwood], in that she wants to leave the EU, is an animal-lover and a vegetarian. I support, in essence, all three positions. Also, she has chronic medical conditions, and I always feel sorry for people suffering in that way. However, “there is no religion higher than Truth” and so on, so I am writing about her, though —after thought– I have decided not to include her in my blog category “Deadhead MPs: An Occasional Series”. That decision may reflect mercy more than justice, but so far she falls just the right side of the line.
“Jenkyns was born in Beverley, Humberside. After leaving school at 16, Jenkyns secured employment at Greggs bakery as her first job. When 18, Jenkyns’ father sent her photo off to a beauty pageant and she got into the final for Miss UK. Over the subsequent years Jenkyns changed employment a number of times, performing a number of different roles at different businesses. Her employment history has included being a secondary school music teacher and an executive with a management training company.” [Wikipedia]
What does that show? Not necessarily that she is unacademic or unintelligent. There are reasons, or were, why people drop out of school early (I believe that it is now more or less mandatory for them to stay until 18). In her thirties she did study for a degree (for what it may be worth these days): International Relations and Politics. Her Wikipedia entry does not say that she was awarded the degree or finished the course at the University of Lincoln. It seems that she may have finished the degree over time at the Open University. She was also awarded a diploma in Economics from the Open University, but only when in her forties (she will be 45 in June 2019).
Andrea Jenkyns is a singer and songwriter, who even had a musical hit in South Central Asia at one time.
I started this study thinking that I would find Andrea Jenkyns rather mediocre and even one of my “deadhead MPs”, but find that I slightly warm to her. She is evidently genuinely interested in animal welfare, and got into politics, it seems, from a recognition that the NHS needed to improve its standards, particularly hygiene standards in hospitals, her own father having perished from having developed MRSA.
Sadly, like so many MPs, Andrea Jenkyns seems to think that proper preparation is unnecessary. Not so. Lack of preparation can make you look rather silly.
Her husband, Giacomo “Jack” Lopresti MP, a former Army reservist, would be able to tell her about the military acronym “the 5 Ps” (PPPPP) (“Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance”); the less polite version has 6 Ps.
The twitterati have taken up arms against her:
As mentioned above, I myself strongly favour Leave/Brexit, but the performance of dunce-like Conservative Leave MPs (some of them) makes me fume: Iain Dunce Duncan Smith is another such.
On the even more negative side, it seems that Andrea Jenkyns is a member (like 80% of Con Party MPs) of Conservative Friends of Israel. Her husband, Jack Lopresti, is another one.
As to her future, her constituency is a Con-Lab marginal created in 2010 and held until 2015 by Labour big-hitter and Bilderberger, Ed Balls. Morley and Outwood has had Con and Lab (Labour and Cooperative) within a couple of points of each other in 2010 and 2015, but in 2017 Andrea Jenkyns won with a bigger margin (50.7% as against 46.7% voting Labour). The third-placed (and only other in 2017), the LibDems, scored worse in 2017 than they had in 2015 (2.6% from 3%). This is a trend seen across the country.
UKIP scored 16.5% in 2015, but did not stand in 2017. There is every prospect that, if Brexit Party stands any time soon, that it could outdo UKIP’s 2015 result. It is doubtful that Brexit Party could win, but a vote amounting even to 10%, let alone 16.5% or more, would be enough to destroy the Conservative majority.
There is every reason to think that, unless Brexit Party lets her off the hook by not standing a candidate at the next general election, Andrea Jenkyns will have to add “MP” to her other and previous short-lived employments.
Update, 31 July 2019
Update, 6 December 2019
Reading the above again, and again watching Andrea Jenkyns squirm in that Daily Politics clip, I think that I probably was too kind in not including her as a “deadhead MP”. Still, there it is.
Andrea Jenkyns has been given an unexpected gift from the Gods inasmuch as Brexit Party is now not standing against her in the 2019 General Election. That may help her to hang on.
Update, 21 December 2019
The gods again smiled on Andrea Jenkyns: Brexit Party did not field a candidate, Labour’s vote collapsed from 46% of the total to 35%, and so Andrea Jenkyns was re-elected with a increased majority and no less than 56.4% of the total vote.