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Remember your friend and vote for his wife.

Lance W Bardsley is an American who worked as an intern at the National Assembly. Here, he fondly remembers Peter Law, and his touch with his constituents

I do not know how to start this editorial for a lost friend, but I will try my best.

I was an intern in the Welsh Assembly in the spring of 2001 and worked for Minister Andrew Davies AM. I met Peter (and he always wanted to be informal) because his office in the Assembly was across the hall. He came out and introduced himself the first week I was there in Cardiff.

My first impression was that it was unusual for a legislative member to be so friendly and so down to earth, especially since he did not know me from a hill of beans (this is an American expression). Although I later discovered the entire Assembly was very amenable.

However, Peter was different from the start because he possessed passion about the people, not the wealthy or important (I think Labour has lost that value), but the common everyday men and women who inhabit any society.

I was somewhat shocked because I had not seen that in my own country in years at any level. I viewed politicians as people who did a job, but not sure for who they really were working.

Peter was somehow different from the mainstream representative. I learned this the day I had the unique opportunity to visit the constituency of Blaenau Gwent. His administrative assistant Jo drove me to the constituency office on a Friday to have Peter give me a tour of the district.

I was in for a surprise! He drove me to every part of his district and proceeded to give me a lesson in local history and sociology about his community. I was impressed, This was not some statistical BS about demographics, but about the plight of real human beings who did not prosper from economic policies in the past and would not in the future.

Finally, he drove us to the top of a large hill or mountain to see the panorama of the valley, which was beautiful in early spring. Also, I saw the original Bryn Mawr since I grew up in the Philadelphia area and was familiar with the town. Since Friday was also market day, I was impressed that he walked the streets and knew everyone and their families personally and could relate to their concerns, personal or public.

So I guess I am writing this to endorse Peter's wife Trish. I never met her, but if she has the passion and the love of people as Peter did the citizens cannot go wrong. I only write this because it was not until recently I read of Peter's death and of the by-election.

So I say thanks to Peter for his sincerity as a representative of the people and a man who gave a damn!
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 27, 2006
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