With the news that insurance entrepreneur Arron Banks is moving from Go Skippy to Go Ukippy, I decided to look at how other prospective election candidates from the insurance sector have fared over the last two elections.
Although Go Skippy founder Banks has yet to be confirmed as a parliamentary candidate for UKIP, these five people below all fought for seats, and in some cases, won them.
QBE's Tim Butcher, Conservative, 2001 and 2005
At the time a director of Lloyd's liability syndicate DA Constable, Tim competed in the Labour held seat of Gillingham and put up a decent fist of it in 2005, with 18 367 votes (40.7%), a swing from Labour of 2.4%. Unfortunately he again lost out to Paul Clark who polled 18 621 votes. Now a director at QBE, where he specialises in construction, leisure and entertainment, he became a County Councillor in 2009 having previously been a Borough Councillor in Surrey.
Aviva's Tracey Crouch - Conservative Party, 2010
Tracey, who previously worked as chief of staff to then shadow home secretary David Davis until 2005, won her seat in Chatham and Aylesford from sitting Labour MP Jonathan Shaw by more than 6000 votes. Before joining Parliament, Tracey was head of public affairs at Aviva.
1st Quote's Margaret Mullane - Labour, 2005
In 2005 Margaret fought the Labour corner in a seat the Conservatives had snatched back in 2001. Then an accounts manager for 1st Quote Insurance Brokers, Margaret faced a 6000 Conservative majority, and despite early confidence, she was unable to unseat Andrew Rosindell. Indeed the gap between the two parties widened, as she polled 9971 votes, well behind Rosindell's 21 560. Unbowed, she has been a councillor in the district of Dagenham & Rainham since 2010 and is also the office manager for Jon Cruddas MP.
The IUA's Marie-Louise Rossi - Liberal Democrats, 2005
The then IUA CEO Marie-Louise stepped down from her role in early 2005 to stand for Parliament. She had been CEO of the London International Insurance and Reinsurance Market Association since 1993, and retained the post when LIRMA merged with the Institute of London Underwriters to form the IUA on 1 January 1999. Fighting in the Cities of London & Westminster, Marie-Louise came third with 7306 votes, well behind the winner, Conservative Mark Field on 17 260.
Stephenson & Threader's Andrew Stephenson - Conservative, 2010
A partner of his family run broker Stephenson & Threader Insurances, Andrew (pictured) won the seat of Pendle in 2010 from the sitting Labour MP Gordon Prentice with a 7.1% swing, giving him a 3586 majority on 17 512 votes. After taking his seat in Parliament he told Post: "Brokers have been forced out of business by over-burdensome regulations. The FSA has done so much damage to the insurance industry, while, of course, completely failing to regulate the banking industry. We need to look at a lot of the legislation - particularly that which has been introduced in the past 13 years and see if it is fit for purpose."
So there we have it. Two wins, three defeats.
How do you think Arron will do? And are there any other insurance workers out there you know off who will be fighting in the 2015 election?
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