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Labour fails to select candidate in South Northants

Author: Martin Johns - Lib Dem Published: 23rd April 2017 11:06
Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate Chris Lofts discusses local issues with a resident.Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate Chris Lofts discusses local issues with a resident.

With the general election just weeks away Labour has failed to select a candidate in South Northamptonshire. The news has been revealed by the Liberal Democrats, who say that it shows Labour has “given up".
There are over 340 constituencies Labour has still not selected for in England, including South Northamptonshire. In contrast the Liberal Democrats have selected 92% of their candidates in England.
Liberal Democrat candidate for South Northamptonshire Chris Lofts said:  
"It seems that Labour have simply given up on places like South Northants. This election is now clearly a two-horse race between the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives. Labour claimed to be prepared for a general election, but many of their approved candidates are simply refusing to run under Jeremy Corbyn.

Chris Lofts added:
"And who can blame them? They see a leader who is ineffective and a party that is too divided to stand up for local people. Every government needs to be held to account and the Liberal Democrats are rapidly emerging as the real voice of opposition.
If you want to ensure our country has a real opposition, the Liberal Democrats are the only choice in South Northamptonshire."
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At 09:18 on 25th April 2017, MichaelBailey commented:
Steady on there Chris, calling the Lib Dems the real voice of opposition after having enabled the Tories in the last Government is a bit of a big stretch.
Nick H
At 10:57 on 25th April 2017, Nick H commented:
I hadn't read this properly. Good luck Chris! I think you'll need it in this consituency.

I won't be voting myself this time around though, I'll only join the system when we become a democracy, and I wish the Lib-Dems would keep pushing for a PR system. I want my vote to count, and not become a mere statistic to be dragged up whenever it suits. Just think of how many seats the party would have won at the last general election under PR!

And considering the EU MEPs have a PR voting system, and the Lib-Dems are a pro-EU party, why do they not continue to fight to apply the same principles at home.

I also cannot vote for an anti-Brexit party, as a Brexit voter, as that would seem stupid. Personally, I find Tim Farrons position as anti-democratic and frustrating at times, and he has already changed his tone from pre-election call anti-Brexit to a post-election call soft-Brexit statements. It's easy to say something when you know it makes no difference to your support, but when asking for 17m to vote for you it suddenly becomes important to say the right things.

You are correct about Labour though, not being a strong opposition, and that is their internal battle between true Labour principles and simply doing anything to get power.

But I wish you well in your campaign. I expect I'll be making many more comments over the coming weeks, as a non-voting commentator of course.

Nick Holder
At 14:32 on 26th April 2017, JimmyB commented:
Nick H,

The Lib Dems are a pro PR party. Well they were last time I checked. Maybe its just not at the top of their manifesto at the moment.

This is where I have an issue. I understand you are voting with national issues at the forefront. But do you not have a preference as to who you would want to be your MP? It saddens me that people lose the whole concept of having an MP for your area in the national politics buzz.

MichaelBailey, enabled? Pegged back more like. Can you imagine how bad things would have been if the Tories had full power. Oh right, we are experiencing that joy now!
Nick H
At 15:29 on 26th April 2017, Nick H commented:
The Lib Dems are a PR party, but they aren't pushing it at all at present. They are choosing to fight over the Brexit issue as a main concern (and I admit it is pretty important). When they do go back to trying to get PR, I might vote for them, as more than anything I want the UK to be a democracy, and that is my primary goal. Once achieved, I'll look at the other issues.

I have absolutely no preference for a local MP. The reason is they cannot do anything to help the local people, other than apply pressure, and a voice, but no bite, and ultimately it is down to national policies and guidelines that determines what actually happens locally with government control issues.

Local councils deal with the local issues, and that is how it should be, while MPs deal with the national issues, and pulling it all together, which should not bias any particular constituency because an MP happens to live there.

But mostly, lets take South Northants as an example, and presume that Andrea Leadsom retains her seat. If I am a Labour or Lib Dem supporter, I’d have no local representation in Government other than a candidate who does not hold my own aims and beliefs, so where is the advantage of a local MP in that?

If I am a Green supporter, or SNP, I (presumably) won't even get a chance to vote for my party in my constituency at all, and I'm not planning to move to a constituency where there is a candidate for those parties, it's not like school admissions.

People often object to PR because you don't get a local MP. So what? Better to have a distant MP than none at all. Next is coalitions. MEPs are voted for by PR, and many European nations have PR. Two examples, Germany – PR, France – PR (for the presidential race at least). You might argue that they aren’t doing well if you like, but I think both countries are pretty strong. Also Holland, Belgium, Italy, Austria, … I could go on (I tend to!)

But mostly, and this is crucial, a PR system selects members that represents the will of the people, whether that is united or divided. If the ultimate aim is power, just admit it, and lets not play games and pretend that we have a fair voting system. We are not a democracy. Everybody has a vote, but if you vote for a loser, you have no voice, no representation, and have just put a tick in a box.

Nick Holder

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