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Keith Raffan


In office
6 May 1999 – 7 January 2005
Preceded by New Parliament
Succeeded by Andrew Arbuckle

Member of the UK Parliament
for Delyn
In office
9 June 1983 – 9 April 1992
Preceded by Constituency Established
Succeeded by David Hanson

Born 21 June 1949 (1949-06-21) (age 60)
Aberdeen, Scotland
Nationality Birtish
Political party Scottish Liberal Democrats (from 1999)
Other political
affiliations
Conservative Party (until 1992)

Keith William Twort Raffan, (born 21 June 1949) in Aberdeen, is a former Conservative Member of Parliament and Scottish Liberal Democrat Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP).

Originally a Conservative, he was in the 1970s a chairman of Pressure for Economic and Social Toryism (precursor of the Tory Reform Group), placing him on the left of the Tories. He was a Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) in Westminster for the Welsh seat of Delyn from 1983-92, but his progressive views on issues like drugs and devolution put him out of favour with the prevailing leadership of Margaret Thatcher, and he was never made a Minister. Raffan was one of the few Conservative MPs to support the 'stalking horse' leadership challenge of Sir Anthony Meyer MP (his constituency neighbour in north Wales) against Mrs Thatcher in 1989, and he then supported Michael Heseltine's challenge to Thatcher the following year.

Raffan stood down from Delyn in the 1992 General Election and abandoned the Tories due to his support for devolution and their resolute opposition to it. After working as a broadcaster in New York and then for Welsh TV Channel HTV, he joined the Liberal Democrats and moved to Scotland. There he first stood (unsuccessfully) in the North East Scotland European by election in 1998, and then at the 1999 Scottish Parliament election he was elected as a regional list MSP to represent Mid Scotland and Fife.

He was one of three LibDem MSPs (along with Donald Gorrie and John Farquhar Munro) to oppose the coalition with the Labour Party in the Scottish Parliament in 1999; and was alone in his LibDem colleagues in not backing Donald Dewar for First Minister (he abstained from the vote) that year.

Raffan was re-elected at the 2003 Scottish Parliament election and he also became a Vice Convener of the Scottish Liberal Democrats. However, in December, 2004 he was subject to wide criticism for claiming abnormally large expense costs from the Scottish Parliament. The following month he resigned as an MSP, citing health reasons and not the controversy his expense claim had caused as the reason.

He was replaced by Andrew Arbuckle, who had been next on the Lib-Dem list for Mid Scotland and Fife in 2003.

The Scottish Liberal Democrats have confirmed to the press that Raffan is no longer a party member. He now lives in London, and is no longer associated with either of the two political parties that formed the basis of his parliamentary career.

External links

Offices held

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
(new constituency)
Member of Parliament for Delyn
19831992
Succeeded by
David Hanson
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