Today is the day we make history

This is the most important, unpredictable election in living memory. The polls show that neither the Conservatives nor Labour can win a majority so UKIP, as the next biggest party in the polls, could have an important part to play in deciding who runs the country and on what terms.

Neither the Conservatives nor Labour can win the election so don’t waste your vote, help make UKIP strong enough to hold the balance of power and bring some honesty to Westminster.

This election is history in the making and you can be part of it.

Posted in Elections

Nigel Hastilow says vote for someone you don’t want to stop someone else you don’t want from winning

Nigel Hastilow, political columnist for the Express & Star and Shropshire Star and former Conservative candidate for Halesowen & Rowley Regis, has taken the unusual step of explaining why he’s going to vote for a political party he doesn’t want to win.

Nigel HastilowHe doesn’t like the Conservatives, doesn’t like David Cameron, doesn’t agree with Conservative policies, doesn’t trust their promises and doesn’t want them in government but he’s going to vote for them because he doesn’t like Labour, doesn’t like Ed Miliband, doesn’t agree with Labour policies, doesn’t trust their promises and doesn’t want them in government.

He says that if UKIP do well in a particular seat then they’ll do well in neighbouring seats but not well enough to win and that will let Labour win based on the estimate that UKIP takes 4 voters off the Conservatives for every one it takes off Labour. Were Labour and the Conservatives the only parties standing in elections other than UKIP that might be the case but the political landscape this year is very different from last year, let alone the general election five years ago.

For instance, the same polling that suggests four Conservatives voters switch to UKIP for every Labour voter also says that one Lib Dem voter will switch to UKIP for every three Conservative voters which is more votes for UKIP not at the expense of either Labour or the Conservatives. The polling also predates the Green Party’s recent surge on the far left, hoovering up Labour votes and giving a boost to the Conservatives.

According to a Comres poll conducted after the local and EU elections last year, 86% of people who voted UKIP said they would do so again this year. Those people aren’t going back to the parties they previously voted for, they’re now UKIP voters. They’re not Conservatives casting a protest vote who can be enticed “home”, UKIP is now their home. If any of them can be convinced to vote Conservative, they’re UKIP voters casting a protest vote against Labour not Conservative voters returning home.

But the big logic failure in Nigel Hastilow’s article is the idea that UKIP voters would prefer a Conservative government to a Labour government. Yes, a Labour government is a terrifying prospect and even more so if they end up in a coalition with the SNP. But the prospect of a Tory government is equally frightening, especially if they have to form a coalition with one of the minor parties like the Lib Dems, the Greens or the DUP. As mentioned above, 86% of people who voted UKIP last year intend to do it again this year – they’re voting UKIP because they want UKIP, it’s not a protest.

You can imagine Nigel Hastilow being asked by his colleagues at the Express & Star where they should go for a team meal …

“I don’t like curry, it always makes me ill and I don’t want to go for a Chinese because I had Chinese food last night”.

“What I really want is pizza but everyone always chooses Indian or Chinese so I suppose I’d better say Chinese just in case most people say they want a curry”.

So instead of getting pizza like he wants, poor Nigel is probably going to get Chinese. Again. Because voting for something you don’t want because you don’t want something else just increases the chances of you getting something you don’t want.

If you don’t want to wake up on May 8th to find that your vote has helped someone you don’t want to win the election then make sure you put your cross next to your local UKIP candidate.

Posted in Elections Tagged with: , ,

Transport and Planning & Environment Policies

We launched our local manifesto a couple of weeks ago and the feedback we’ve had has been fantastic.

The Conservatives and Labour threw together a few pages of bullet points with some pictures and called it a manifesto but we went into much more detail and produced a 10 page manifesto with almost 2,000 words. We’ve put a lot of thought into our policies and we’re sure people want to put a lot of thought into who they’re voting for but you can’t do that with a Powerpoint presentation.

In the run-up to the last election we were the first party in Telford & Wrekin to launch a local manifesto, we were the first party to publish our local policies all the time and now we’re the first to publish detailed policies so you can see that we’re offering more than soundbites.

The first two policies we’re publishing are our transport and planning & environment policies. The rest will be published over the next few days.

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Posted in Elections Tagged with: , , , ,

Vote Labour, get Green

Labour and the Greens campaigning together in Southwater. Vote Labour, get watermelons*.

David Wright with Peter Hawkins

* Watermelons – green on the outside, red on the inside.

Posted in Telford News Tagged with: ,

Happy St George’s Day!

St GeorgeSmile at us, pay us, pass us; but do not quite forget,

For we are the people of England, that never has spoken yet.

Posted in General Tagged with:

Don’t make our heroes beg for more

David Wright and Mark Pritchard both like to big up their credentials when it comes to the armed forces. Whether it’s riding a tank up the Wrekin to get their picture in the paper or writing strongly worded letters to the Ministry of Defence, they tell us that they are the saviours of the military bases in and around Telford that provide employment for thousands.

But both MPs represent parties that have failed to respect the military covenant and neglected the people who put their lives on the line for the defence of our country to the extent that an estimated 1 in 10 homeless people are ex-armed forces.

Only UKIP can be trusted to look after the men and women whose job it is to defend our country. At yesterday’s unveiling of UKIP’s defence policy, it was announced that defence spending would be increased to 2% of GDP, a dedicated administration would be created for veterans answerable to a Veterans Minister in the Cabinet, a national service medal would be created for all serving armed forces personnel and money would be invested in hostels and services to combat homelessness, mental health issues and poverty amongst veterans.

Labour, the Conservatives and the Lib Dems want to cut our defence capability to the bone and they are all committed to a joint EU armed forces. The Green Party want to abolish the armed forced and turn military bases into nature reserves. Only UKIP will commit to defence of our nation, meet our NATO and UN obligations, respect the military covenant and look after the people who have served to defend our country.

Don't make our heroes beg for more

Posted in UKIP News Tagged with:

Party Election Broadcast #1

This is the first of UKIP’s party election broadcasts for next month’s general election …

Posted in UKIP News Tagged with:

Who are the people backing David Wright?

What have this young mum from Telford, the Managing Director of AFC Telford Utd and doctor from Madeley all got in common? Apart from backing David Wright, of course?

Alice Huda – “young mum from Telford” – says she’s backing David because many people are disillusioned with politics and politicians (but David is different) and because they’re promising 25 hours of “free” childcare (paid out of her own taxes). Alice is probably backing David because she is the daughter of Cllr Paul Watling, Labour borough councillor for Madeley and cabinet member for Children & Young People.

Lee Carter – “Managing Director, AFC Telford Utd” – says he’s backing David because he is a strong advocate of local business and an advocate of local organisations working together. Cllr Lee Carter is probably backing David because he’s a Labour town councillor for Wellington.

Dr Teresa McDonnell – “Church Close Surgery, Madeley” – says she’s backing David because she’s know him since before he was an MP and he has been a strong advocate for local health services. Dr McDonnell is probably backing David because she’s a Director of a company alongside her friend Labour Dawley councillor Clive Elliott.

A Labour councillor, a Labour councillor’s daughter and a Labour councillor’s business partner support Telford’s Labour MP. There’s a shocker.

David Wright leaflet

Posted in Elections, Telford News Tagged with: ,

Shrewsbury’s MP proposes merger of Shropshire and Telford

The Conservative MP for Shrewsbury & Atcham, Daniel Kawczynski, has suggested merging Telford & Wrekin Council with Shropshire Council. He says that a combined authority could save £14m a year through efficiencies which could be spent on improving services.

Shropshire County Council abolished the five district councils in Shropshire against the wishes of most residents. Cost savings were promised from abolishing the district councils but the savings were pie in the sky and the district offices are still open. Centralising local government at Shirehall has reduced democratic accountability and disadvantaged not just the smaller towns but any part of the county more than 20 minutes’ drive from Shrewsbury. The unitary authority model just doesn’t work for a large rural county like Shropshire.

Telford is the largest town in the county, there is more big business in Telford and the population is growing at a much faster rate than the rest of Shropshire. There are lots of ways that Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin can work together but there are too many differences between the two local authority areas for a merger to make any sense. Whilst we would be more than happy to work with Shropshire Council where our needs and priorities match, there will be no merger while we’re in a position to stop it.

Daniel Kawczynski with David Cameron

Posted in Shropshire News, Telford News Tagged with: , ,

UKIP MP Mark Reckless on Question Time in Telford

UKIP MP for Rochester & Strood, Mark Reckless, is in Telford tonight to appear on Question Time.

The other panellists are:

  • Conservative Party Chairman, Grant Shapps MP
  • Lib Dem MP for Wells in Somerset, Tessa Munt MP
  • Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, Rachel Reeves MP
  • Times journalist, Camilla Long

This is Mark Reckless’ first appearance on Question Time since his defection to UKIP which prompted an angry rant from Grant Shapps and with just 8 weeks to the election, this could be one of the last times we will get to see a Lib Dem MP.

Posted in Telford News, UKIP News Tagged with: , ,