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Sunday, November 9, 1997 Published at 19:48 GMT



UK: Politics

Tories so posh it's scary

Who do you really, really want?

Margaret Thatcher may have been dubbed by the Fab Five as the first Spice Girl. But who is most-loved Spice in the corridors and debating chambers of the British Parliament?

Before the election, the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, said his family had held a "full and frank debate" on who was their favourite. But, diplomatically, he did not reveal his preference.

Now a survey of 106 MPs has attempted to resolve the issue. It found the House's predilections divide along party lines.

The Tories, it seems, are posh. Labour, even New Labour, are just scary.

Despite their youthful leader, not one of the Conservative MPs polled expressed a preference for Baby Emma Bunting.

Posh Victoria Adams was their clear favourite, winning 29.8% of the Tory vote.

Scary Melanie Brown also received no votes from the Conservatives.

But she was the first choice amongst Labour MPs, though it was a close call at only 16%.

In a contest between five candidates, it would seem difficult to win with less than 20% of the votes cast.

The apparent error is explained by the fact a number of Labour MPs insisted on staging a write-in campaign and nominating their wives.

Though the group is short of a manager, they are not seeking new recruits.

One Conservative MP who refused to complete the poll organised by the music chain, HMV, Peter Temple-Morris, provided an explanation for such behaviour.

"The collective effect is the essence," he said. "Individually, you can do better on the King's Road."

Labour's Austin Mitchell put it another way: "All useless."

Amongst the Tories, Ginger Geri Haliwell (10.5%) and Sporty Mel Chisholm (5.25%) were the runners-up.

For Labour, the verdict was Mel C (9%), Emma (7%) and Victoria (1.75%) with no votes for Geri.

The Liberal Democrats sat on the fence: Victoria (25%), Geri (18.3%), Mel B (16.6%) and Baby by 8.33%.








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