13 July 2018
Jesse’s Ross Gazette column: an update from Jesse

Hello again! This column dropped out briefly from the pages of the Gazette, but it's a pleasure now to be able to bring it back.

The run up to the summer recess, when the House rises and MPs head back to their constituencies or on vacation, is always one of the busiest times of year. And with Brexit as well as the usual business on our plates at the moment, this year has been busier than ever.

In the course of a few days I found myself winding up the debate on the Heathrow Third Runway, completing not one but two pieces of legislation on the floor of the House, and telling the redoubtable Andrew Neil, Grand Inquisitor of the BBC Daily Politics Show, that he didn't know what he was talking about. Yes, really.

The legislation consisted of the Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill, and the Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Bill. Not the sexiest new laws, I grant you, not laws that will generate a lot of headlines, but laws that with luck should make people's lives better and more secure.  One giving Government new powers to help roll out fast charging for electric vehicles, the other helping the UK to manage the Brexit process.

As for Andrew Neil, the BBC's answer to Torquemada attempted to suggest that the Government had made no contingency transport plans for Brexit. In fact the reverse is true, from freight to driving licences to seat belts, so I told him so--and lived to tell the tale!

And finally, it has also been an extremely busy week for me personally. Last Thursday saw the launch of my new biography on Adam Smith. I am thrilled to say the reviews have been wonderful.  Rossiter Books will be holding a launch event on Thursday 11th October, in case you want to save the date.