Eastleigh by-election: TUSC


Third up was a much more detailed reply from the TUSC. Plus another website. Maybe ballot papers should start including QR codes!

Answers as below James.
Best regards
Daz Procter
Council of executive
RMT

[Email and phone number]

Rise like Lions after slumber, In unvanquishable number, Shake your chains to earth like dew, Which in sleep had fallen on you, Ye are many — they are few!!

Dear Daz Procter – Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition,
I will be voting in the by-election tomorrow unfortunately I have not yet heard from all the candidates, and the candidates I have heard from have not addressed all the issues that are important to me. Please could you answer the following questions to help me decide who I should vote for:

1. What are your views on equal rights, for example do you support the introduction of gay marriage?
TUSC promotes diversity and believes that there are bigger issues that need opposing and people should be able to live as they are happy without fear.
2. I am very concerned about the introduction of secret courts as part of the Justice and Security Bill. Would you oppose the introduction of secret courts?
Most definitley we support justice not secrecy.
3. In my view MPs have a poor track record on technology issues, for example the ill-considered Digital Economy Act, which my last MP was unwilling to discuss. What are your views on repeated attempts to introduce a snoopers charter?
I think MP’s have a port track record on many issues with a disregard for the people that they represent at times. Standing as an MP does not mean that I have researched every single act, and I would rather be honest than do as other prospective politicians do which is try to twist the question. I have not researched the attempts of a snoopers charter but would guarantee that I would not dismiss any concerns of my prospective constituents and a full consultation would take place with those that I represent on any issues of concern.
4. Do you agree that it would be easier to reduce dishonest and corrupt business practices if there was more transparency in company relationships and ownership? How would you tackle this issue? For example, would you back legislation to crack down on non-trading companies?
Dishonesty and corruption is top of my list because how can local business compete when big business owes £120bn in taxes yet the local business must pay. I believe that honesty and transparency is the best policy and we need to promote this within business because any corrupt finding will only damage business whilst transparent professionalism will promote business.If we chased the money owed from tax evasion and avoidance from big business and the cuts where not being carried out this would also promote transparency with more people spending money and
5. Can you promise to fight to protect NHS services both nationally and at our local hospitals?
We oppose all cuts and find them unnecessary and would promote the growth of the NHS and other public services.
6. Would you support any changes to the current laws on abortion and, if so, what changes would you like to see introduced?
This is an issue I would have to investigate further, being a seafarer and a trade unionist it is not something that I have ever fully investigated so before committing to answer on this at this stage I would look into it in more detail and consult those I represent on their views fully before making committing fully rather than firing from the hip and changing my views at a later date.
7. What role do you think an MP has in local issues? What will you be able to do to help resolve issues like planning that other locally elected representatives are not able to do?
I believe in democracy, and local issues should be discussed by those it will effect and locally elected representatives. If this is not occurring then this indicates a breakdown in local politics, if a break down in local politics is occurring then the locals are being ill represented and would need to be investigated.I would insist in being involved and supporting locally elected representatives and remind them of their accountability to the local residents.
8. What measures would you take to promote green technology and to prevent climate change?
Invest in publicly owned, produced for need no for profit controlled renewable energy.
9. Do you have a by-election manifesto where I could find out more about issues that are important to you?
http://www.tusc.org.uk I am always happy to be contacted to discuss issues, it’s not what is important to me that counts its what is important to you, because as your representatives I will be raising your issues and that is what is important to me!Representing those involved in every day struggle due to being under constant attack as a consequence of political incompetence is my motive to stand.
10. Do you intend to stand in future Eastleigh parliamentary elections?
Yes, I believe the people of Eastleigh are now becoming aware of a political party that will actually represent them, doesn’t change answers to suit a specific audience and is in touch with reality and will not u turn on policies promised.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. Please let me know if you would prefer me not to publish your responses on my weblog.
Thank you for the opportunity to answer, I am happy for my answers to be put on your blog.

Good to see a candidate considering questions rather than just giving answers that they think people want to hear. Also looks like the first candidate we can expect to hear from again in Eastleigh, which is nice.

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Undecided Eastleigh by-election voter


Thanks to 38 Degrees handy email the candidates page, I decided to to stop waiting for random leaflets to drop through the door. It’s certainly helped me narrow down the options- after all, if they don’t reply when they want something from me (my vote) what are the chances of getting a response when they’ve been elected.

I didn’t get quite the same response rate as the Hedge End Blogger but surprisingly, especially given the short notice, almost half of the candidates actually replied. The next few posts are from the candidates but first, here are the questions (in no particular order!)

From: James Taylor – Hedge End
To: Colin Bex – Wessex Regionalist, Danny Stupple – Independent, David Bishop – Elvis Loves Pets Party, Daz Procter – Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, Diane James – UKIP, Dr Iain Maclennan – National Health Action Party, Howling Laud Hope – Monster Raving Loony Party, Jim Duggan – Peace Party, John O’Farrell – Labour, Kevin Milburn – Christian Party, Maria Hutchings – Conservatives, Michael Walters – English Democrats, Mike Thornton – Liberal Democrats, Ray Hall – Beer, Baccy and Crumpet Party

Subject: Undecided Eastleigh by-election voter

Message:

I will be voting in the by-election tomorrow unfortunately I have not yet heard from all the candidates, and the candidates I have heard from have not addressed all the issues that are important to me. Please could you answer the following questions to help me decide who I should vote for:

1. What are your views on equal rights, for example do you support the introduction of gay marriage?

2. I am very concerned about the introduction of secret courts as part of the Justice and Security Bill. Would you oppose the introduction of secret courts?

3. In my view MPs have a poor track record on technology issues, for example the ill-considered Digital Economy Act, which my last MP was unwilling to discuss. What are your views on repeated attempts to introduce a snoopers charter?

4. Do you agree that it would be easier to reduce dishonest and corrupt business practices if there was more transparency in company relationships and ownership? How would you tackle this issue? For example, would you back legislation to crack down on non-trading companies?

5. Can you promise to fight to protect NHS services both nationally and at our local hospitals?

6. Would you support any changes to the current laws on abortion and, if so, what changes would you like to see introduced?

7. What role do you think an MP has in local issues? What will you be able to do to help resolve issues like planning that other locally elected representatives are not able to do?

8. What measures would you take to promote green technology and to prevent climate change?

9. Do you have a by-election manifesto where I could find out more about issues that are important to you?

10. Do you intend to stand in future Eastleigh parliamentary elections?

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. Please let me know if you would prefer me not to publish your responses on my weblog.

Good luck tomorrow.

Thank you to all the candidates who replied– you’ve made it through to the final round of voting tomorrow!

If anyone else is still having trouble deciding, there is also a 38 Degrees by-election hustings video.

Another uninspiring election


Looking for Beer, Baccy and Crumpet party? Thanks to Ray for pointing out that their manifesto is now online!

Despite having twice the number of candidates, I think I may have been a tad optimistic to think that this election would be any more interesting than usual.

Being 2013 unable to adapt, almost all the parties are effectively engaging with voters using a variety of social media tools pushing tons of leaflets through doors. So far I have one letter and one leaflet from UKIP, three leaflets from the Conservatives, five leaflets from the Lib Dems …and nothing from the other candidates. The other candidates shouldn’t be too concerned though since:

  • I don’t want a free booklet about how many people will move here from Romania and Bulgaria
  • Everyone seems to be fighting to save our green fields
  • The Lib Dem leaflets are as infuriating as ever (that rant will have to wait for a future blog post!)

I have actually found a few of the candidates amongst the people talking about the election on twitter. It wouldn’t be a huge loss if they weren’t though- not exactly much substance, more:

  • where they’re canvassing (need to do a uksnow style map for this in time for the next general election!)
  • what the weather is like
  • how great their support is
  • how busy their HQ is
  • who’s interviewing them

In just two missed opportunities:

  • John O’Farrell revealed that he spoke about local issues to Ed Milliband, just not what those issues were
  • Maria Hutchings is against building on green fields in Botley/Boorley green but less willing to engage in discussions about where the houses might go instead (I actually thought Maria’s twitter stream was reasonably good before the election- maybe she’s too busy knocking on doors to tweet now)

As for everyone else on twitter, today seems to have been mainly:

But what about the other candidates? There are plenty of them but finding out about them is not quite so easy. Maybe if I lived in the centre of Eastleigh, I’d know more. Luckily, Eastleigh News has some articles, including one for the Beer, Baccy and & Crumpet Party, and The Independent has a brief introduction to some of the lesser known candidates. Even better, Matthew Myatt has managed to record a few interviews with the candidates, including Howling Laud Hope.

All of which makes for a pretty miserable choice. So far Laud Hope is most likely to get my vote! If I get time, I’m planning to try out the 38degrees email the candidates form to actually try and extract some useful information to base my vote on. In the mean time, if you are a candidate, please feel free to leave a message below!

Update: most people seem to find this post while looking for the Beer, Baccy and Crumpet manifesto so added link to their manifesto! (22 February 2013)

Anyone can win here!


Well it turns out you can resign from the House of Commons, so if I was crazy enough to stand in the by-election I wouldn’t have to break any manifesto promises! (Even when it comes to resigning those weasily MPs have to bend the rules ever so slightly to get round the slight inconvenience of not actually being allowed to resign, which I guess isn’t a huge shock.)

The Eastleigh by-election should at least be a little more interesting than the last general election and, finally, I’ll get the chance to vote Monster Raving Loony! If there don’t turn out to be any better alternatives that is- at least it’s marginally less pointless than spoiling a ballet paper for a change.

I was wondering how the local Lib Dems might adapt their irritating campaign tactics for the by-election. The result won’t make any difference to which party is in government, and that’s already a coalition of the only two parties who can win in Eastleigh. Well, it appears that old habits die hard. I do hope they’re wrong; it would be so nice to have a change!

So far it looks like we can expect a massive seven candidates to stand but I’d still like to see more independents. There’s not long left to get nominations in but if anyone needs help with signatures, please get in touch!