Wavertree – I’m in it to win it!

It’s ‘game on’ in Liverpool Wavertree where I will be fighting to retain the seat for the Lib Dems following Luciana Berger’s understandable decision to fight Finchley & Golders Green

The move of the sitting Lib Dem MP for Liverpool Wavertree, Luciana Berger, to stand for Finchley & Golders Green means that I am once again the Liberal Democrat Candidate for the Constituency. We regret that because we wanted to work with her although we did recognise her safety concerns and therefore the need to move. No one should be under any illusion that my Party colleagues and I are fighting not to make up the numbers but to win this seat.

Some might say that I am a bit too old to contemplate starting a new Parliamentary career. I say that I have the experience to deliver what the people of Wavertree so badly need. I’ve lived in the Constituency since 1974 and have 37 years experience of fighting for its needs and the needs of the City as a whole as a member of the Council.

I am fighting to win because I believe that:

  • politics should be conducted in a dignified and thoughtful way
  • politicians should not think themselves to be above the law
  • Brexit will hugely damage the prospects of my children and grandchildren and your children and grandchildren
  • the UK could be a major force for good for the World instead of being a pathetic inward looking nation
  • climate change is not something that should be talked about but needs to be tackled urgently
  • the NHS needs support and a new direction if we are to keep our nation health
  • our education services ned a new direction which encourages people of all ages to want to learn rather than being part of an exams based sausage machine

Those are the national reasons but there are local ones as well:

  • Wavertree Constituency Labour Party is corrupt since Momentum took over
  • Decent people like Cllr Paul Kenyon have resigned in disgust
  • Lord Mayor and Cllr Peter Brennan resigned after circulating a racist video
  • Cllr Dave Cummings has been suspended for sexist behaviour
  • Jewish friends of mine who are 6th generation in the City are beginning to be concerned about their safety
  • Labour control of the Council is threatening our environment with crazy road and investment plans.

Liverpool has been the proverbial two horse race between Liberal and Labour since 1973. The last Tory councillor in Liverpool was elected 25 years ago and is now a Lib Dem member. The Greens are confined to a couple of wards in the Riverside Constituency.

Liverpool Wavertree is a constituency with a 70% remain majority and that is the new dividing line in British politics. Old Party allegiances are being cast aside as people decide whether they are internationalists and outward looking or little Brits and inward looking. On the right we have a Brexit of which the best option, although unacceptable, would be Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement.

On the left we have the Corbynistas demanding, within three months a peoples Brexit. This is a Unicorn because the basic concepts which they propose, especially abandoning the freedom of movement of labour and capital which is at the heart of the EU. The majority of people in Britain reject both a Brexit or a Lexit.

Our position is absolutely clear. We would like to have a People’s Vote now. If Parliament don’t agree that and we have an early General Election we will campaign to Revoke Article 50 and stay in the EU. If we have a majority in the House, we will do just that. If not, we will work, once again, for a People’s Vote.

That I believe is the majority view of people in the Wavertree Constituency and will be at the forefront of my campaign. Liverpool Lib Dems have more members and more activists than we have had for many years. We need more members, more activists and more cash to match the huge funds available to our opponents.

The EU will not be the only policy that we will campaign on but it will be the key one. It is the defining issue between liberal and illiberal. It is the issue which will affect all the policies that we and others put forward

We want to take our message to the people of Wavertree through the letter box and on the knocker as we have traditionally done and use other techniques as well. If you want to know more either become a member of the Party or a registered supporter at http://www.libdems.org.uk//join-local.

But whether or not you will support me that is something that you can do to help the debate. If you are a member of a faith group, a community group, an amenity group think now about holding a hustings meeting so that you can challenge all the candidates in Wavertree about their beliefs. I’ll turn up and, within reason, talk to any group and I would hope that any candidate would do likewise.

Lib Dems in the UK and Liverpool Wavertree are on a roll. Make no mistake that when the General Election comes, “I’ll be in it to win it”.

About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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3 Responses to Wavertree – I’m in it to win it!

  1. Tim says:

    Great, you will make a superb MP. But please reconsider opposing the road plans for the Strand which will encourage cycling and reduce car movements through the city.

  2. Derek says:

    Can this error in 5th para be corrected – also repeated on Mark Pack site

    “Liverpool has been the proverbial two horse race between Liverpool and Labour since 1973.”

    You of course mean “Liberals and Labour”.

    Best of luck

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