Elect me on Thursday and I will put all my passion, energy and experience to work on behalf
of the City and its people
Thursday marks the end of an appalling election in Liverpool. It will not be appalling in terms of the Lib Dem vote. We are very confident in a big boost to our vote in all three contests that people can vote for in Liverpool.
No it’s been appalling because there has been next to no discussion of some of the things that most need doing in the city. I think that there are three reasons for this:
The lack of hustings debates in the city. There has only been one community based hustings meeting in the City and that was in my ward! Croxteth Gems tried to hold one but much too late in the day when everyone’s diaries had been filled. I cannot say why this is you have to ask the community groups, amenity groups, churches and similar who should have been doing something about it. Noticeable by their absence were debates about employment creation and jobs. Last time both the Chamber of Commerce and Downtown in Liverpool had a hustings. This year not a peep from either of them.
The lack of long-term coverage by the media. In London the media has been reporting on mayoral issues since last June. There have been hundreds of articles and the media have both arranged their own hustings and interviews but reported extensively on others. Here in Liverpool the media only really got interested at the end of March and even then the coverage has been sketchy.
The lack of policy promotion by the candidates and Parties. I am amazed that, given all the issues which face our City, the only Party to come up with a detailed manifesto was the Lib Dems. I will come back to that later.
Labour put out two gimmicks. The first was to host the Commonwealth Games in 2026. I actually think that is a good idea BUT this is not a new idea. It was actually discussed in June last year. When I rang the council’s officers to find out what had happened since then the answer was nothing. So this great idea of Labour’s is not thought through and is totally uncosted. All we have is a letter to the Government asking for help towards the idea. Similarly with their big plan for new private sector homes for sale. At the prices they are talking about these can only mean one bed apartments with the occasional 2 bed thrown in. What do we have a glut of in Liverpool at the moment – yes you guessed it – small apartments!
The Greens, as is their way put out a wish list – uncosted, incoherent and ill thought through.
No-one else bothered at all.
So what hasn’t been discussed?
- The creation of good quality, high paying jobs.
- The health inequalities both between our City and the national average and within our City.
- The environment generally
- Social housing
- Promotion and marketing of Liverpool
- How we should run and scrutinise our political work.
- The appalling state of the Council’s finances
And many, many more things. You can see what we think about these issues at www.richardkemp.org.uk. What you cannot do is hear or find what the other Parties think of them nor can you hear a debate between candidates which would have brought out the differences between us and perhaps shown where we could work together in the common good.
So we have had largely a negative campaign. But I hope that people will not just vote against Parties and, in the case of Mayor Anderson, just vote against him as an individual. I hope that people will consider whatever evidence they can find and vote for a candidate and Party who they feel can take this city forward.
This last week was a great one for our City as well as for the brave families of the Hillsborough victims and LFC. Those of us that live here know that this city has a strong, proud, innovative and compassionate heart to it. We know that this is a great city that could be greater. But we will only make it great if two things happen:
- We need a shared vision for our city. A long-term plan which will look scientifically at our problems and opportunities and convert them into strengths and opportunities.
- We involve all the citizens, organisations and businesses of our city in delivering that vision. This city will only work if we all have a piece of the action; if we all can use our own passions and interests and knowledge to create a small part of a greater whole.
This City does not belong to any mayor or any Party or any council. It belongs to its people. If and when we move to a position of power in the city we will take that power and give it away to people to help deliver that big vision, that big intent.
If we become ‘Team Liverpool’ there is no City that can take us on. If we work together I honestly believe that the best days for Liverpool are yet to come. If you want to help us in any way lest us know at http://www.richardkemp.org.uk.