About David

I have been the Member of Parliament for Bury St Edmunds since 1997. My main towns are Bury St Edmunds, Stowmarket and Needham Market and I have many villages going as far east from Bury St Edmunds as the A140.
As your MP I have a very simple principle: to take on anybody in authority - whether it be in Whitehall, Westminster, the County Council, the Borough Council, the District Council, the bus companies, the rail companies, the water companies or, indeed, any other utility on behalf of my constituents. I like to get things done!

Why Did I Enter Politics
My family taught me the importance of public service, which is why I entered politics. My father worked in local government for various councils, including the Gipping Rural District Council in Needham Market. My mother was a full time carer for my grandfather who was blind and deaf. My mother taught me the virtues of self reliance, compassion and personal responsibility. For me, becoming a Member of Parliament was the best way to make a difference to society and try to improve the quality of life for everybody.
On leaving grammar school I went to Cambridge University then practised as a solicitor advising many small businesses. At the beginning of the 1990s I was headhunted by the Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke, QC MP - to be a trouble shooter in the Department of Education and Science and to keep a keen eye on his civil servants. I did this job for the same Cabinet Minister at the Home Office (1992-93) and then when he became Chancellor of the Exchequer in May 1993 until 1996. I was his Chief Adviser at the Treasury- a period when Ken Clarke got the economy into the best shape for a generation.
I won the 1997 General Election as the candidate for Bury St Edmunds - with the lowest Labour "swing" against me of any Conservative held seat in the whole of the United Kingdom, which is something I am proud of!

Your LOCAL MP, and your National Representative
In the House of Commons I represent Suffolk town and village values as well as I possibly can. I have campaigned for more rural bobbies on the beat; against concreting over our green fields with unnecessary house building; for the preservation of the rural post office network in the face of Government policy and for high quality local health services, including the excellent St Nicholas' Hospice in Bury St Edmunds.
Living in Suffolk as I do, I am a campaigning community politician. I am a Patron of several local institutions: - The West Suffolk Voluntary Association for the Blind, the West Suffolk Alzheimer's Society, the Bury St Edmunds Town Trust, the Suffolk Deaf Association, the Bury St Edmunds and District Football League and the Theatre Royal in Bury St Edmunds. It is a privilege to be involved in these local institutions.
As well as taking Suffolk's views and problems to Westminster, I also take an active part in national issues. I was elected to the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee on which I served until March 2004. This involved Inquiries and cross examination of such as the International Monetary Fund and their work on the reduction of Third World Debt. I have cross-examined the Chancellor of the Exchequer at least three times a year on his management of the British economy. I also have had regular meetings and enquiries into the work of Alan Greenspan, Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, Wim Duisenberg, President of the European Central Bank and Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England.
I served as a Whip in Her Majesty's Opposition Whips Office between March 2004 and July 2005 - this involved me managing detailed legislative scrutiny.

In addition, I am a member of the All Party Beer Group (I have Greene King in my constituency), the All Party Hospice Group, the All Party Parliamentary Group on the Countryside and the All Party Small Business Group.

David joins David's team

In December 2005 I was delighted to be appointed by David Cameron, the Leader of the Conservative Opposition, as the new Shadow Minister for Welfare Reform.

I now have the important responsibility of holding the Government to account on issues such as tackling poverty in our society, reform of the benefits system - including the highly controversial Incapacity Benefit - and the incredible amount of taxpayers' money lost through fraud and error in the benefits system.

I hope you find my website interesting, particularly details of the local campaigns I have been running over the past four years or so.

This web site is the responsibility of David Ruffley MP and is paid for from the Incidental Expenses Provision

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