24 Sep 2012

Like father but not like son

One man who must be in agony over the Andrew Mitchell is his father, Sir David Mitchell, who was an Conservative MP for 33 years (1964-97). 

He served as an opposition whip under Ted Heath, then later as a minister for under eight years under Margaret Thatcher – in the Industry department, Northern Ireland and Transport. 

It’s said Sir David would have run Sir Keith Joseph’s campaign had he run for the leadership in 1975, instead of Thatcher – just as Andrew ran David Davis’s leadership campaigns in 2001 and 2005. 

For ten years, between 1987 and 1997, the two Mitchells, father and son, sat together in parliament.
Sir David, in the words of one Conservative MP today, was an “old fashioned knight of the shires” Conservative, and had a very different reputation from his son. 

He was known around the Commons for being mild-mannered, polite and courteous, and will no doubt hate hearing about the words attributed to his son. 

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