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With 12 hours to go until the polls open, Lichfield and Burntwood’s candidates have been invited to make one final plea to voters in their own words.
Below is Class War candidate Andy Bennetts’ eve of the election statement…“This election is drawing to a close, the pantomime is nearly over. Nationally the campaign has focused on questions of spending and the deficit and the electorate are being mugged off with a narrative from both the Tories and Labour. Since the 2008 financial crash the Tories blame Labour spending for the national debt but the Tories neglect to mention that they never opposed a single Labour spending plan between 1997 and 2008. In 2007 during the campaign for the election that never was, Osborne made a speech promising to match Labour spending plans for the next three years. We all know that the reality of the situation is the debt was caused primarily by bail outs for the banks but obviously the Tories, being the party of banks and bankers, won’t blame them. Labour obviously know where the money went, they gave it to the banks, but won’t pull the Tories up on the debt narrative because Labour are the other party of banks and bankers, they’re effectively taking the blame on behalf of the banks. One of these parties is going to form the next government of that there is no doubt. Whoever you vote for, wherever you are in the country, the government of banks and bankers continues after the election and the poor and the vulnerable will continue to shoulder the burden of the deficit and the national debt caused by bailing out a rotten financial system. In Lichfield the vagaries of the first past the post system and the tribal nature of constituency politics all but guarantee that Michael Fabricant will be returned as the MP for Lichfield and Burntwood. Our votes here are next to worthless. Politics doesn’t end with the election. It doesn’t even begin with it. From privatisation of NHS services that are set to give us the grotesque spectacle of cancer and end of life care conducted for profit in Staffordshire, to HS2 tearing up the countryside the issues that effect us are ours to tackle. There is no alternative on offer in the ballot box. The alternative, if there is to be one, must come from us, the people of this constituency, whether we have lived here all of our lives or moved here only recently. Parties such as UKIP that seek to divide us along lines of race and nationality can only weaken us. If we can come together we can tackle the issues that matter to us. If we can’t, if the extent of our engagement is ticking a box in the election, we’ll get what we’re given. Don’t vote. Organise.” The candidates standing in the Lichfield constituency are:
- Andy Bennetts – Class War
- Michael Fabricant – Conservatives
- Robert Pass – Green Party
- John Rackham – UKIP
- Paul Ray – Lib Dem
- Chris Worsey – Labour