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  The MiP files: Why Blair listens to Foo Fighters!
Updated 19 November 2002, 12.02
The MiP files: Our Man in Parliament reports for CBBC Newsround each week
Parliament is the most powerful place in Britain - so why don't we know more about it?

We've recruited our own man on the inside, to provide us with all the top info and secret goss every Tuesday.

And at the bottom of the page you can get him to track down your MP!

Tony Blair playing guitar
Tony Blair's favourite band are Irish rockers U2!

And the first record he ever bought was by the Beatles.

The prime minister says he also listens to Coldplay and the Foo Fighters.

But that's mostly because he hears his children playing them in their bedrooms.

  Click here for the full story on Blair's favourite music

"When you've got teenage children the sounds are usually bouncing off the walls," he said.

Kids who bunk off school could land their parents in big trouble under new plans from the government.

As I told you last week, Tony Blair wants tough action over truants. And some of his plans were revealed on Friday by the man in charge of schools, Charles Clarke.

Parents whose children keep bunking off could face fines if they don't turn up for special parenting classes.

And police officers could even be stationed in some schools.

A group of MPs have had a close encounter with a gorilla on a trip to Africa.

Oona King
One of them, Oona King, told how the male MPs with her reacted when the animal charged towards them.

She said: "One was remarkably cool, calm and collected. He did not faint. Incredibly, however, the other grabbed me by both shoulders, stood behind me and used me as a human shield."

You'll be glad to hear the MPs got away unscathed.

Eleri, 16, from Nelson, asks why there is no children's commissioner - an official who protects children's rights - in England like there is in Wales.

Good question. And one even the prime minister's wife Cherie has asked!

"We are looking at how it works in Wales," the government told me when I asked what was going on. "We want to see if it would add to all the other work we do for children."

I'll let you know what happens.

"They're nothing but scum and should be treated as scum."

- John Robertson, MP for Glasgow Anniesland, on people making hoax calls during the firefighters strike.

Each week our MiP will give you the chance to have your MP identified.

Just send us your name and postcode using the boxes at the bottom and he'll do the rest.

This week, Michael, 11, from Harlow gets his MP identified.

Bill Rammell
Where are you from?
Labour (he is also a minister in the foreign office)
School nickname:
Greatest achievement:
Getting an extra 650,000 for schools in my area. I campaigned to get 'Excellence in Cities' funding from the government for my Harlow constituency.

My parents, who gave me the values, beliefs and convictions I have today.
Last movie I saw:
My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Football team:
Spurs - who else?
MP I admire:
Neil Kinnock (ex-MP and leader of Labour Party)
Were you interested in politics as a child?
By the age of 13/14 - yes
Why does politics matter?
It is the only way to build a fairer society.
What one thing would you change tomorrow?
A fairer, more responsible press which reported positive achievements by politicians as well as criticising us when we get things wrong.


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Also in The MiP files now:
MiP Files: The prime minister's crucial week
MiP file: Tory leader faces off with PM
MiP files: A new leader for the Tories?
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