Jo Cox in 2016. Sir David Amess 2021. Reaching out in service and to help their local communities through surgeries and public meetings- at a church- only to be attacked and killed is an assult on our way of life, our democracy, and as an attack on an elected member and representative of us citizens, an attack on us all.
I knew Sir David and was proud to call him a friend. We met a few times campaigning at first, and then on the terrace in the Commons, over drinks where he kindly gave me advice on my political career, future, the work-life balance, and the personal cost of politics. While he left an impression on me, considered him a political mentor with his warm smile and gentle advice on my political ambitions, I am certain I did not. I last saw him briefly at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester only a few days ago and made the error of not wanting to bother him by saying hello. Smiling genially and going around the charity stands and groups, he looked so comfortable and at ease, willing to help, listen and learn, willing to lend his voice to those without a platform. He would be stabbed to death only a few days later.
Both these senseless murders of public servants of the realm, by someone who has shown no remorse or shame, will affect many, will be deeply felt by friends, family and residents, and has shaken our democratic nation once more.