Saturday, 1 May 2010

David Davis refuses to join debate - again!

The article below by Jonathan Reed appeared in The Yorkshire Post on 27 April 2010:

'Call for apology follows market confrontation


A ROW has broken out between a clergyman and former Shadow Home Secretary David Davis after a confrontation at a market place.

Father Oliver Coss has called for an apology after a confrontation with Mr Davis in Cottingham market as he tried to persuade him to take part in a hustings event he was organising.

But Mr Davis, who is campaigning to regain his Haltemprice and Howden seat, insists that during the exchange he was "firm but polite" and dismissed the incident as a "storm in a teacup".

Mr Coss, assistant curate of St Mary's Church, Cottingham, approached Mr Davis at the market along with Father Paul Smith, the Rector, after being told the politician was unable to attend Sunday's event, and said they were "astonished" by his response.

Mr Coss, who said he was a Tory voter but would be rethinking, said the meeting turned into "a deeply confrontational episode in front of our parishioners".

Now Mr Coss has written about it on social networking site Facebook where he said: "I want nothing more than an apology and this hustings to take place without any further unpleasantness".

But Mr Davis denied allegations he was rude. He said he already had campaign commitments when he received a written invitation the day before the encounter, and said a call received by a secretary several days earlier had not been passed on to him.

"I had no intention to be rude to anyone," he said.'

This has become a pattern. In the 2008 byelection the Tory campaign team used the same excuse (communications mix-up) to explain Mr Davis's refusal to engage with me on the civil liberties issue. What is he worried about?

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