Conservative party candidates for the 8 June general election are calling themselves “Theresa May’s candidate in [insert name of constituency here]”. That’s what they’ve been briefed to do, because the Conservative Party thinks that Theresa May is an electoral asset, and that voters who would normally not vote Tory will vote “for her”.
Normally, I would say “you’re not voting for party leaders, you’re voting for your local MP”. But my Tory opponent in Preston, Cumbrian farmer Kevin Beaty, is happy to relegate himself to the position of “Theresa May’s candidate in Preston”, so let’s take him at his word for a moment. What can we say about Theresa May?
- Failed to control immigration in her six years in the job at the Home Office
- Campaigned unsuccessfully for Remain in lead up to the Brexit referendum
- Achieved her ambition to become leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister almost by default and despite her reputation as an ineffective authoritarian
- Misjudged the mood of the Leave majority and threatened to use expatriates as “bargaining chips”
- Is prepared to pay to leave the EU – £52 billion or more is being demanded
- Will maintain legally binding targets for harmful foreign aid: 0.7% of gross national income: more than £12 billion in 2015, and rising
And that’s just off the top of my head, and doesn’t begin to consider her failings in domestic policy.
Remember, the Conservative party is the party that took us in to the European Community, that kept us in, that took us further in to the European Union, and that tried to keep us in, permanently, just last year. Like her candidate in Preston, Theresa May was part of that, campaigned for that, and now has the job, on behalf of the British people, of negotiating the terms of our independence. Can she be trusted with that? Has she changed her views? Is she now on the side of British independence?
We have no choice of Prime Minister. We shall have a Conservative government whatever happens in Preston, but your vote for me will ensure one of two things:
- If elected, I will hold the government to account on Prestonians’ behalf, ensuring, to the best of my ability, that there is no Brexit backsliding and that a future independent UK takes its rightful place in the world.
- Even if I am unsuccessful, and Labour’s Mark Hendrick is returned to Parliament, your vote for me will remind him that the people of Preston voted for Brexit and expect it to be delivered.
Every UKIP vote counts. Votes for the Conservative Party will make no difference. Remember that I am the only Brexit-supporting candidate for Preston in this election.
Kevin Beaty is Theresa May’s representative to Preston. That’s not good enough. Vote for your local candidate who believes Brexit will be a success and who will hold the government to account on your behalf. Vote UKIP. Vote Platt for Preston.