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MP Bob Russell tells constituent: Stop whingeing and get a life
1:50pm Tuesday 14th December 2010 in Local News
COLCHESTER MP Bob Russell has told a constituent to “get a life and stop whingeing” in an official response to an inquiry.
Garry Burbage, of Canterbury Road, Colchester, asked Mr Russell if taxpayers’ money would be used to pay for Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton next year.
Mr Russell replied: “Haven’t you got something better to do with your sad life? What a miserable person you must be!”
He added: “Events surrounding the Royal wedding will help create an economic plus. I suggest you get a life and stop whinging.” Mr Burbage, a carer for mental health patients, said he was stunned by the letter.
He said: “I consider the response I received as a personal attack about myself as an individual and my life, which Mr Russell knows nothing about.
“I find it incomprehensible to be told I have a sad life and must be a miserable person – I was only asking a question as a taxpayer and voter.”
Lib Dem Mr Russell said he wanted it made clear the letter had been passed to the Gazette and other media organisations by Kim Naish, a Labour Colchester councillor. He said: “I suspected the letter was from a Labour-oriented person, trying to entrap me into saying something. Now Mr Burbage has passed it to Kim Naish, it confirms my suspicions.
“I’m more than happy if Mr Burbage wants to let the world know what a miserable sod he is.
“He wrote a very out of order, critical letter and I have replied in the same vein.”
Mr Burbage’s original letter to Mr Russell said: “We are all being told we must make economies, suffer cuts in services, endure a long period of financial hardship and remember that ‘we’re all in this together’.
“Can I, therefore, take it for granted not one penny of taxpayers’ money will be used to pay for the Royal wedding next year?”
Berechurch representative Mr Naish said it was a legitimate inquiry and did not warrant Mr Russell’s “rude” reply.
He said: “I think he should be sacked for it. If any employee of a company spoke to someone like that in their professional capacity, they would be sacked on the spot.”
Mr Russell claimed: “This is nothing but a Labour Party stitch-up.”