Tag Archives: 2014 Euro election

Parliamentary Candidate’s Reaction to European Election Results


Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate Reacts to Election Results

Press Statement from Richard Wilson, Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Guildford

26 May 2014 – for immediate release

Labour had strong results in the European Parliament election in Guildford, the South East and Great Britain generally. In Guildford, Labour achieved 4,004 votes, 10.4% [note 1]. This is more than double the vote share achieved at the 2010 general election.

Across the South East, Labour took 15%, up from 8% in 2009, the last European election [note 2]. The vagaries of the d’Hondt system of proportional representation mean that although Labour nearly doubled the LibDem vote it wasn’t quite enough to gain another MEP in this region.

In the country as a whole (before Scotland has declared) Labour took 25.4% up by nearly 10 percentage points since 2009. There will be 20 UK Labour MEPs in Brussels for the next 5 years, up from 13.

Labour’s 2015 parliamentary candidate for Guildford, Richard Wilson, reacted to the result: “I am so pleased that Labour’s Anneliese Dodds has been elected as a Member of the European Parliament to represent this region. Anneliese has been a regular visitor to Guildford and joined us on the High Street, on doorsteps and at the University [note 3] to speak to voters face-to-face. She is a firm favourite with party volunteers and members of the public in Guildford. We are very lucky to have such a hard-working and talented new MEP.”

Guildford Labour Party members have been knocking on doors for months to hear voters’ concerns and explain Labour policies. Thousands of leaflets were delivered by volunteers, Labour did not need to employ people to do this.

Richard Wilson continued, “On behalf of the Labour Party I would like to thank the staff of Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils for conducting the election with their usual diligence. Also, I am extremely grateful to the Labour supporters who gave up their free time to help by knocking on doors, delivering leaflets or telephoning voters. We have a great team of volunteers here and our efforts are starting to bear fruit.

“Most of all, I would like to thank the voters who cast their vote in this election for Labour. Unlike the Conservatives, Labour has representation in the European Parliament from every region of Great Britain. We have been out on the streets of Guildford taking the pulse of public opinion. People will no longer blindly vote Tory here. LibDem voters are almost impossible to find and frequently people are persuaded not to vote Ukip when they hear about their policies, such as abolishing the NHS and legalising hand guns.

“Labour fought a policy-rich election which resonated with voters. We pledged to restore the right to see a GP within 48 hours, raise the minimum wage and protect tenants. Across the UK our party is reconnecting with voters conversation by conversation, doorstep by doorstep, street by street. Nationally, we have knocked on 7 million doors in this campaign. And, even though Ukip and the Tories have outspent us with seven-figure sums, Labour had more activists out on polling day than all the other parties combined.”

Ends

Note 1: Guildford declaration here http://www.guildford.gov.uk/media/17043/European-election-results—Guildford/pdf/European_Election_Results_2014_Final.pdf

Note 2: BBC News http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/politics/eu-regions/E15000008

Note 3: Anneliese Dodds and Richard Wilson launched the Growing Knowledge report in Guildford http://www.guildfordlabour.org/eu-money-supports-scientific-research-in-guildford

Note 4: Richard Wilson is available at Richard@guildfordlabour.org or on 01483 511272.

Note 5: South East Labour Party regional press office is on 0118 923 9402 / 07941 425 421

 

Parliamentary candidate Richard Wilson with Anneliese Dodds MEP in front of the statue of Alan Turing at the University of Surrey

Parliamentary candidate Richard Wilson with Anneliese Dodds MEP in front of the statue of Alan Turing at the University of Surrey

Richard Wilson

Parliamentary Candidate

Guildford Labour Party

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Promoted by Alex Wilks on behalf of Richard Wilson, both of 9b Martyr Road, Guildford, Surrey GU1 4LF

Vote This Thursday


On Thursday, voters will be able to elect the next Members of the European Parliament to represent the UK. The proportional representation system means that every vote will count. The more votes each party gets, the more MEPs it will have.

If the opinion polls are correct the largest party will be either Labour or Ukip. Unfortunately, Ukip have gained popularity by whipping up fears about foreigners. Their representatives have said some ugly things about people from other countries. Political parties have used these tactics before to attempt to gain votes but the British people have always been too sensible to give in to fear and hatred. However, fewer and fewer people are voting in elections and it is tempting to give voting in EU elections a miss. If the turnout is low and Ukip MEPs are elected in large numbers it will send a message to the world that we want to stop cooperating with other countries, and isolate ourselves.

I believe Ukip does not share British values. British people want to keep rights at work like paid holidays and maternity pay. We want the millions of jobs that are dependent on our EU membership. British consumers are protected from big businesses by EU law but Ukip want to end that.

Events in Ukraine have shown that the European Union is seen as a beacon of peace and prosperity. Ukip want to end the EU and have countries competing in a race to the bottom: lower wages and low skill jobs undercutting our neighbours.

This is not what the people of Britain want but if Ukip end up with the most MEPs, this is what they will try to achieve. The only way to stop Ukip leading Britain out of Europe is to vote Labour on 22 May. Please remember to vote and show that British people do not share Ukip’s fear of other countries.

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Richard Wilson

Parliamentary Candidate

Guildford Labour Party

Twitter | Facebook | Blog | Website | YouTube | Donate

 

Promoted by Alex Wilks on behalf of Richard Wilson, both of 9b Martyr Road, Guildford, Surrey GU1 4LF

 

Campaign Day 15 May 2014


Richard Wilson:

Looking forward to this campaign day in Cranleigh.

Originally posted on Cranleigh Labour Party:

One week before polling day for the 2014 European Parliament elections we will be listening to voters in Cranleigh and explaining why it is so important to vote on 22 May. The European Union is a beacon of peace and prosperity for oppressed people across the world. Countries in Europe cooperate instead of fighting each other. By doing so, they all prosper.

The European Union ensures a base level of workers’ rights and consumer protection. All members and big companies trading here have to meet or exceed this level. Ukip’s plan for the UK to leave the EU will isolate us and force us to compete in a race to the bottom. We would have a low skill, low wage economy undercutting states with protection for workers. Workplaces would be more dangerous, people could be sacked at will and paid leave would be a thing of the past. Cutting “red…

View original 169 more words

Ukip Don’t Share Cranleigh’s Values


Originally posted on Cranleigh Labour Party:

photo RW My name is Richard Wilson and I was recently selected to be Labour’s parliamentary candidate for the constituency of Guildford which includes Cranleigh. I am a 42-year old airline Captain and I have lived in Surrey for 14 years. In 2015 I will be asking voters here to trust me with their votes to be their next MP. It is a great honour for me to represent Cranleigh albeit only as a candidate at this stage.

1743520_10151948116012411_838760583_nAs the largest village in England, Cranleigh has the advantages and disadvantages of both villages and towns. The roads cannot cope with the current traffic levels, never mind projected future car traffic. House prices are unaffordable for young families. Household bills like electricity, gas, rent and child care are rocketing but wages can’t keep up. Our environment is under threat from unsustainable development and now dangerous fracking for gas. Like everywhere in England, the…

View original 378 more words

Europe’s far right and why voting on 22 May matters


Fascism, racism and anti-Semitism are growing all across Europe. In French local elections recently the National Front made huge gains. In Greece the Golden Dawn draws support from inside police stations and not just from the occupants of the cells. Geert Wilders in the Netherlands “says what everyone is thinking” according to one of his supporters I spoke to. The True Finns, now known as The Finns Party, got 19% of the vote in 2011. Far right parties in Latvia and Poland are members of the same grouping in the European Parliament as the British Conservatives since David Cameron took his MEPs out of the more moderate EPP grouping. Some of these MEPs hold an annual commemoration of the Latvian Waffen SS of the Second World War.

Here in the UK, Ukip and Conservatives are pushing the same buttons, whipping up anti-foreigner sentiment, blaming economic austerity on immigrants and the vulnerable. Since 1945, Europe has been largely at peace because we have cooperated with each other. Increasingly now nationalism and xenophobia are returning.

On 22 May, the UK will elect its Members of the European Parliament by proportional representation. Every Labour vote will count, wherever it is cast. Now is the time to stand up against the rising fascism and racism. In a few years time it will be too late. I’ll be pulling out all the stops for this election. The general election is just over one year away. Next month’s election will be the most significant electoral event here this year. It is absolutely vital that all Labour supporters do everything they can over the next 5 and a bit weeks to ensure we elect as many Labour MEPs as possible to counter racism from the UK and the other 27 members of the EU.

Join me (and ‘like’ this) on the campaign trail and let’s make sure we leave it all on the field!

Be part of the Guildford Labour election campaign!

Be part of the Guildford Labour election campaign!

Euro Hustings in Camberley 28 March 2014


The European Parliament elections are on 22 May 2014, less than two months away. It is vital that all Labour supporters, wherever they live, come out and vote. The election uses proportional representation, so every Labour vote will count.

One of our candidates, John Howarth, will be speaking at a hustings meeting in Camberley. I know John well and he is an excellent public speaker. He will be a brilliant MEP but he will only have the chance to represent us if Labour supporters remember to vote on 22 May.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to seeing John make mincemeat of his opponents at the hustings. See you all there!

Euro Hustings in Camberley

Debate: What future for the European Union?


Last night, I attended this debate between European Parliament election candidates at Royal Holloway University of London in Egham:

debate

There was a large audience, mostly students, who were very engaged with the subject. It started late because some candidates had been delayed by the extreme weather conditions and flooding nearby but it continued about an hour after the published finish time, so we weren’t short-changed. Also, the Conservative representative was actually Richard Robinson MEP.

An unusual aspect of the upcoming Euro election is that all of the candidates at the debate might well be elected. It is a proportional representation system, so every vote counts for the party it is cast for. For example, Labour votes in strongly Tory areas are added to Labour votes in strongly Labour areas to give a total for the whole South East. This is then compared to all the other parties to determine how many of the ten MEPs come from each party.

This is very different from Westminster elections where there can be only one winner in each constituency and there are no prizes for second place. There were many issues which united most of the candidates at last night’s debate. In a first-past-the-post contest candidates might have aggressively disagreed with each other more. In the European Parliament, MEPs cooperate more with each other than we see at Westminster, where punch-and-judy contests are more common.

However, as Labour’s Anneliese Dodds said, the centre of gravity of the European Parliament at the moment is on the right and this election can move it towards the centre-left. One questioner objected to cooperation between MEPs. He complained that four of the five candidates would probably agree on 70% of votes. The party that doesn’t like to cooperate is UKIP.

What has the EU done for us?

Three main categories of achievements spring to mind:

  1. Social Rights. For example, paid holidays – although British companies might have given workers paid holidays outside the EU, they would still have to compete with foreign companies who didn’t if the EU hadn’t mandated it.
  2. Consumer Rights. For example, the European Parliament voted 506-6 in favour of improving rights for disabled air travellers. Since this applies across the EU, airlines and countries cannot undercut each other and compete on a level playing field. Incidentally, only UKIP voted against.
  3. Environmental Protection. Outside the EU, Britain could work to clean up our beaches but without agreements with our neighbours their rubbish could be washed up on our beaches and vice versa. Working together benefits us all.

By cooperating on issues which affect us all, everyone in the EU can gain. The EU Solidarity Fund was discussed last night. If Britain applied, we could receive funding to cover 5% of the cost of the current highly-damaging floods in England. At the time of writing, David Cameron has still not requested this from the EU. This goes to the heart of the problem with the EU “debate” in this country: inherent xenophobia of the right. Cameron used to tell his party to “stop banging on about Europe”. He position is too weak in his party to tell them that today. Tory backbenchers froth at the mouth when they rant about foreigners. UKIP has given them permission to let loose and reveal their irrational fear. They are suffering from a phobia.

Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate… 

UKIP exists because of fear. It is part of their orthodoxy. Julia Reid, their representative last night, started by exhibiting xenophobia. She tried to revive fears of 29 million Romanians and Bulgarians coming “over here”. The reason Keith Vaz didn’t find any at Luton Airport was, she claimed, that they all arrived by bus, being too poor to afford air travel. There was no evidence for this, of course.

Her party has underlying homophobia and other fears too. She displayed paranoia when claiming climate change didn’t exist and it was a conspiracy of the scientific elite. She actually said that other scientists had disproven climate change but their work was censored by publications and the media. This sort of delusional rubbish can be read on some internet forums or heard from Daily Mail readers in pubs but this audience was mostly educated students, so eventually she was treated with contempt and laughed at, I’m pleased to report.

Nobody knows what UKIP’s policies are. Nigel Farage says their last manifesto was “drivel”. However, abolishing the NHS seems to be one of their plans. Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall and their PPC in Guildford, Harry Aldridge, have both said publicly they would prefer an insurance system instead.

Julia Reid even said that Britain should halt military cooperation with other European countries. She implied that France’s export of Exocet missiles to Argentina in about 1980 was a casus belli. UKIP is not just an amusing home for deranged bigoted pub-talk, people could actually get hurt if they achieve the electoral success they seek.

I saw two elderly UKIP supporters who had accompanied Reid marching the university corridors afterwards thunder-faced attempting to give leaflets to students. They caused bemusement and mirth here, let’s hope the rest of the country leaves them talking to themselves too.

Back in the land of the sane

UKIP was a distraction but the rest of the debate was very interesting. The EU helps countries come together for the good of their citizens. Improved fair trade agreements give Britain influence on the global stage it could not achieve on its own. Measures to reduce carbon emissions and prevent animal cruelty all have to include cross-border cooperation. Without the EU these important achievements would not be possible.

It is vital that we have capable, committed MEPs representing us in Europe. The Tory MEP, Richard Robinson, is anti-EU and, like the other Tory MEPs, is no longer part of a mainstream grouping in the European Parliament. If our country is marginalised we cannot influence the direction of the EU and we will all lose out.

Anneliese Dodds, the Labour candidate, showed that she understands the issues in Europe and has the talent and ability to fight Britain’s corner and win for the people of the South East.

Sophia James

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