In 1954, Thatcher was defeated when she sought selection to be the Conservative party candidate for the Orpington by-election of January 1955. She chose not to stand as a candidate in the 1955 general election, in later years stating: "I really just felt the twins were . . . only two, I really felt that it was too soon. I couldn't do that. " Afterwards, Thatcher began looking for a Conservative safe seat and was selected as the candidate for Finchley in April 1958 (narrowly beating Ian Montagu Fraser). She was elected as MP for the seat after a hard campaign in the 1959 election.  Benefiting from her fortunate result in a lottery for backbenchers to propose new legislation, Thatcher's maiden speech was, unusually, in support of her private member's bill (the Public Bodies [Admission to Meetings] Act 1960), requiring local authorities to hold their council meetings in public; the bill was successful and became law.  In 1961 she went against the Conservative Party's official position by voting for the restoration of birching as a judicial corporal punishment.