Graham Allen (politician)

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Graham Allen
MP
Member of Parliament
for Nottingham North
Incumbent
Assumed office
11 June 1987
Preceded by Richard Ottaway
Majority 8,138 (23.7%)
Personal details
Born (1953-01-11) 11 January 1953 (age 61)
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Allyson Stewart
Alma mater University of Leeds, London Guildhall University

Graham William Allen (born 11 January 1953) is a British Labour Party politician, who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Nottingham North since 1987.

Early life[edit]

Born in 1953 in Nottingham, he was educated at the local Robert Shaw Primary School in Aspley, Nottingham and Forest Fields Grammar School in Forest Fields.[1] He graduated from City of London Polytechnic, and received an MA[citation needed] from the University of Leeds.[1]

He joined the Labour Party in 1971 whilst working as a warehouse worker. He worked from 1978 to 1983 as a Research Officer with the Labour Party.[1] In 1982 he was elected as a councillor to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, which he served until 1986. He was a local government officer at the Greater London Council between 1983 and 1984, before working for the Trade Union movement, running the first Political Fund ballots, and then with the GMB until his election in 1987.[1]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Allen was elected to the Nottingham North constituency at the 1987 general election, taking the seat for the Labour Party from the sitting Conservative MP Richard Ottaway with a majority of 1,665 votes.[2] His majority at the 2010 general election was 8,138.[3]

After helping to organise Tony Blair's leadership campaign,[citation needed] Allen was given a series of shadow portfolios, including social security, transport and the environment.[1][4] After the Labour Party came to power at the 1997 general election Allen became a government whip until after the 2001 general election when he returned to the backbenches.

He opposed the Iraq War, and was at the forefront of a successful campaign to recall Parliament in September 2002, attempting to organise an unofficial recall if the House would not formally sit.[5]

Allen has sat on a number of Parliamentary select committees and is the Chair of the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee in the House of Commons.[4][6] He is also a member Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission.[4]

Democratic Reform[edit]

Allen is a proponent of democratic reform[4] and supports independent local government, some proportional representation and a fully elected House of Lords.[citation needed] He introduced a bill calling for a written constitution in the UK.[when?][citation needed]

In 1995 he wrote "Reinventing Democracy"[1] and in November 2002 he published The Last Prime Minister: Being Honest About the UK Presidency,[1] claiming that the UK effectively had a presidency. He argued that the Prime Minister (or 'President', as he referred to the office throughout the book) should be directly and separately elected in order for a better separation of powers. This new arrangement, he argued, would be best spelled out "in plain English" in a written constitution.[citation needed]

Early Intervention[edit]

Allen is a strong advocate of early intervention in social issues.[citation needed] He wrote "Early Intervention, good parents, great kids, better citizens" with Iain Duncan-Smith in 2009.[4] He wrote two reports for the government on the topic in 2011.

Constituency[edit]

In October 2005, Allen became the first MP to Chair a Local Strategic Partnership, which was subsequently renamed One Nottingham.[7] Allen set it the mission of making Nottingham an "Early Intervention City".

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g ‘ALLEN, Graham William’, Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012 ; online edn, Nov 2012 accessed 3 Jan 2013
  2. ^ Keele University: Political Science Resources: UK General Election results June 1987
  3. ^ Nottingham North, BBC 2010 election. Retrieved 2013-01-03.
  4. ^ a b c d e Graham Allen, www.parliament.org. Retrieved 2013-01-03.
  5. ^ MP steps up Parliament 'recall' bid, BBC news website.
  6. ^ Select Committee on Political and Constitutional Reform, www.parliament.org. Retrieved 2013-01-03.
  7. ^ One Nottingham: The Board

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Richard Ottaway
Member of Parliament for Nottingham North
1987–present
Incumbent
Political offices
Preceded by
Janet Anderson
Vice-Chamberlain of the Household
1998–2001
Succeeded by
Gerry Sutcliffe