London (Parliament Politics Magazine) – Christopher Chope is a British politician who has been serving as the Member of Parliament for Christchurch since 1997. He is a Conservative politician who is known for upholding traditional values. Moreover, he is an advocate for small businesses, for cutting public sector bureaucracy, and for reducing the size of government.
He also strongly defends civil liberties and has argued in favor of a referendum on the European Union. If this isn’t enough he is the chairman of the Conservative Backbench Committee and has served on numerous other committees and select committees. The list includes Transport Select Committee, the Health Select Committee, and the Home Affairs Select Committee.
Bio & Early Life
Christopher Chope was born on 19th May 1947 in Putney. His parents are Pamela and Robert Charles Chope. His father was a circuit judge and former judge of county courts. He completed his studies at St Andrew’s Preparatory School in Eastbourne and Marlborough College. After a few years, he attended Queen’s College at the University of St Andrews. This university is now known as the University of Dundee. At this university, he was awarded an LLB degree. Moreover, he finished his education at the Inns of Court School of Law. Due to his hard work and skill, he was asked to join the bar at the Inner Temple in 1972.
Christopher was first elected in 1983 and has served as an MP for more than 35 years. During his parliamentary career, Chope has held several positions. At the time of John Major’s premiership, Chope was appointed as a Minister of State for Transport. He then served as Employment Minister between 1995 and 1997, and as Minister for Local Government in 1997.
In 2001, he was appointed to the position of Parliamentary under Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. His appointment saw him chair the Local Government Resource Review Scrutiny Committee. It was an act of liaison between the government and local authorities.
Additionally, Chope also had a prominent career in the field of finance. He was a member of the Treasury Select Committee and chaired the Financial Services All-Party Parliamentary Group. He was a member of the All Party Parliamentary Small Shops Group. Moreover, he has worked on the All Party Cafés and Senior Citizens Group.
Despite his controversial views, Sir Christopher Chope has been a consistent and hardworking Member of Parliament. He is a respected figure in British politics. The decades of service in the House of Commons have seen him take on a variety of positions. He has worked to tackle issues, both contentious and consensual. Despite some missteps, Sir Christopher Chope’s parliamentary career remains largely held in high regard. His efforts to improve transparency in government and advocate for freedom of information will ensure his legacy outlives his political career.
Blocking & Filibustering of Bills
In 2018, Christopher Chope was present at the House of Commons when the Motion of Private Members Bills was put forth. Unexpectedly, he objected to the bill. This objection resulted in the bill’s failure to secure the two-thirds majority needed for it to pass. It created much confusion within the House of Commons. After the news of Chope’s actions had spread, it eventually broke out on social media and caused an uproar.
This conflict between Chope’s political beliefs and the public’s needs has been seen throughout his political career. In 2009, he attempted to block a bill that would have changed the rules around when a convicted criminal is released from prison. The changes in the bill were intended to stop dangerous criminals from being released early into the public. He attempted to block the bill and cited a need to maintain consistency in the justice system.
He has blocked bills that are seen as immensely important to public welfare and this has caused mass frustration. His views may be different from those of the public. However, it is important to consider the consequences of his actions before making a considered decision.
Personal Life & Net Worth
Christopher Chope got married to Christine Mary. She is the daughter of Robert Hutchinson, of Wimborne, in Wimborne Minster. Before their marriage, Christine was employed as the House of Commons secretary and researcher for three years. The couple is blessed with two children. His total net worth exceeds $7 million.
Principle Advocate Of Freedom
In addition to the aforementioned roles, Chope was also a principal advocate for freedom of information. He strongly opposed Labour’s Freedom of Information Bill, which he believed would impede freedom of the press. In the meantime, he introduced his Right to Know Bill, which sought to increase public access to government documents.
In recent years, Sir Christopher Chope has been under fire for several controversial votes. This is the mere backing of a tougher animal cruelty Bill and his refusal to back the female genital mutilation (FGM) Bill. He also frequently rises to his feet to block legislation relating to the tenant and consumer protection, among other controversial topics.
Role In European Union
Christopher has been an ardent supporter of the European Union since its formation, having served in the European Parliament (EP). During his time in the EP, Chope was the chairman of the Environmental Committee. In this position, he sought to create a balance between economic development and environmental protection. He also helped to increase cooperation between the various Member States, boosting investment in renewable energy sources. It also improved energy efficiency across Europe.
Aside from his enthusiasm for Britain’s involvement in the EU, he fought to ensure its external borders are protected. He made sure that British citizens receive their rights under EU legislation. Moreover, he opposes any notion of British isolationism believing that cooperation and collaboration with other nations are key to success. His support for international cooperation, as well as for the efficiency and fairness of the EU’s legislative process is appreciated. It has been instrumental in ensuring the success of the Union.