Tom McNally, Baron McNally
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2009)|
|The Right Honourable
The Lord McNally
|Minister of State for Justice|
13 May 2010
|Prime Minister||David Cameron|
|Leader of the Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords|
24 November 2004
Sir Menzies Campbell
Vince Cable (acting)
|Preceded by||The Baroness Williams of Crosby|
|Born||20 February 1943|
|Political party||Liberal Democrats|
McNally was born in Blackpool of Irish Catholic descent where he attended St Joseph's College, Blackpool. He later attended University College London, where he was elected president of the Debating Society as well as University College London Union President.
He later worked for the Fabian Society, and then as a full-time employee of the Labour Party, becoming its international secretary. He served as a political advisor to Foreign Secretary, James Callaghan during the conflict in Cyprus in the 1970s, before becoming head of the Prime Minister's political office at Downing Street when Callaghan succeeded Harold Wilson.
Elected to the House of Commons in 1979 as a member of the Labour Party for the constituency of Stockport South, in 1981 he was one of the later defectors to the new Social Democratic Party. Following constituency boundary changes for the 1983 general election McNally was the SDP candidate for the new constituency of Stockport, but finished in third place behind Labour and the Conservative victor, Tony Favell. He has been President of the Stockport Liberal Democrat Constituency Party since 2007. From 1993 he was Head of Public Affairs at Shandwick Consultants. On 18 November 1995 it was announced he would receive a life peerage. The Letters Patent were issued on 20 December and he took the title Baron McNally, of Blackpool in the County of Lancashire.
In January 2006, McNally was linked to the resignation of Charles Kennedy, with critical comments regarding Kennedy's leadership of the party, and the effect that infighting was having on their electoral prospects in the upcoming local elections in May. Lord McNally criticised Kennedy, suggesting that his style and content were lacklustre. On 21 January, Lord McNally revealed in an interview that he had himself been alcohol dependent in the 1980s. He said, "I don't think the passing of a more boozy, ill-disciplined, ill-researched type of politics is to be regretted at all." Friends noted that it had been quite a struggle for McNally (and his then-wife, Eileen) but that he had successfully stayed on the wagon since and, after remarrying, had forged a happy life, living in St Albans.
In May 2010, following the formation of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition Government, Lord McNally was appointed Minister of State at the Ministry of Justice, under Kenneth Clarke.
A current criticism of McNally is his blocking of an official pardon of mathematician Alan Turing on indecency charges, because he says that Turing was correctly targeted under the UK's 1950s laws.
He is a Vice-President of the Debating Group.
- Lord McNally profile at www.justice.gov.uk
- Who's Who
- BBC Democracy Live: Lord McNally biography
- The London Gazette: . 18 November 1995. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 28 December 1995. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
- Dire election prophecies fail to make my flesh creep
- Debating Group
- Lord McNally's personal life and family
- Lord McNally profile at libdems.org.uk
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Stockport South
|Party political offices|
The Baroness Williams of Crosby
|Leader of the Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords
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