Lord Antony Harold "Tony" Newton, Baron Newton of Braintree, PC, OBE, DL did just that.
One of the few Conservative peers to champion the vulnerable throughout the passage of the Welfare Reform Bill, he spoke out on plans to charge destitute mothers or fathers to use the Child Support Agency. Because of his determination, many thousands of parents, at their lowest ebb, facing the darkest of times, will now face a fee of £20 rather than £100 to get justice and security for their children.
He spoke out for disabled children, tried to save the social fund and opposed cutting legal aid for welfare cases. Very few others challenged their own government in this way.
He leant on one arm when speaking - a technique I note David Cameron adopts at the despatch box. His wise words drew many a debate back into focus and whilst he by no means opposed the entire bill, that balance added integrity when he did.
His rather sharp rebukes were offered with gentlemanly humour and decades of experience. As a previous Minister for Disabled people, he knew very well why Disability Living Allowance had been introduced and how it was designed to provide for the extra costs of disability - regardless of means or employment status.
He had a rather grumpy air, a dismissal of pomp and hypocrisy - from any party - that breathed life into the stuffy chamber.
There were few in the House like "Tony" Newton. I am Spartacus, and I thank you.
May your memory somehow influence today's inheritors of your legacy. They needed you more than they knew.
RIP Lord Newton, (29 August 1937 – 25 March 2012