The Hartlepool MP’s decision to be “too busy” to attend a meeting about Post Office Closures enables him to avoiding taking a stand that might irritate his Westminster bosses and risk damage to his political career. The Hospital Closure debate didn’t cost Labour the Hartlepool seat so Iain Wright probably calculates a few Post Offices closures won’t either.
However, in May there are local elections. The claim of “don’t blame us, blame the government” is wearing very thin, especially when it’s a Labour Councillor in a town with a Labour MP, blaming a Labour Government.
A letter reportedly to sub-post masters is putting the closures on hold during the local elections. Post Office Managers are apparently concerned closures could become a "local political issue" and so agreed to a government request for a freeze on some elements of the Network Change Programme during the run-up to these elections.
A “freeze” is only a temporary reprieve. If the Government were honest they would admit they cannot reverse the closure decisions as closures are being driven by Brussels. So long as European Union Directives take precedence over Westminster then the British Government doesn’t have the power to halt the closures.
It doesn’t matter whether you vote Labour, Conservative or Lib-Dem. Regardless of what may be said at local level all three of these Parties at national level support British Membership of the European Union and so all three ultimately support the Post Office Closures.