Nicky Morgan, currently serving as Minister for Women (answers on a postcard for who is the incumbent Minister for Men), has, true to form, proposed the preposterous idea that the Conservative Party would consider all-women shortlists after the next general election if the Party fails to have enough female MPs.
All-women shortlists are wholly un-conservative. The concept is an insult to women everywhere. Appointment should be based on the quality of one’s credentials and suitability for the role, not on the nature of their genitalia.
If I was to undergo life-threatening surgery and I was given the choice of a surgeon who had studied at the best institutions, topped all of their classes and led in their field, or someone who wasn’t as well qualified or experienced but came from a particular social group, so perhaps I should give them a go, I know who I would choose.
If adopted, all-women shortlists will degrade any woman elected as a Conservative Party parliamentarian after 2015 as they will never know if they achieved their position through merit or through gender. This will do little to solve Dave’s women problem and would anger the already disgruntled grassroots who are flocking to UKIP.
Both positive and negative discrimination is wrong and the Conservative Party must not go down this route.
The Prime Minister needs to consider whether Ms Morgan is suitable for the role of Minister for Women as she seems intent on pursuing a Harriet Harperson agenda which is in its entirety anti-conservative.