Disgraced former Tory MP Chris Davies has scandalised voters in Brecon and Radnorshire by campaigning for re-election with the words “you’ve got to support me”.
They come at the end of an election communication full of logical contradictions. Let’s examine them – we can laugh at him at the same time.
He begins: “Over 10% of residents in Brecon and Radnorshire have signed the recall petition. That means we’ve now got a by-election.”
This is true – but it was almost 20 per cent of residents who signed the recall petition. With by-election votes being significantly lower than in normal elections, this hostility to Mr Davies seriously harms his chances.
“Over three years ago as a new MP, I made a stupid mistake. I submitted incorrect paper work (sic) for a legitimate expense for my office. As a result, I’ve completed community service and paid a fine of £1,500.
“This is my fault and no one else’s.”
It is welcome that Mr Davies admits that he was responsible for the wrongdoing – even if he doesn’t want to admit that it was a criminal offence for which he was convicted in a court of law. People voting for him would be supporting a convicted criminal and endorsing the actions that led to his conviction.
“I sincerely apologise – to you and to all the residents of Brecon and Radnorshire.”
I doubt the sincerity of this apology. Firstly, he spent nearly a year denying that he had committed an offence and only admitted it when his case got to court. Secondly, my household did not receive this letter so he is clearly not apologising “to all the residents of Brecon and Radnorshire”.
Now he moves on to discuss the by-election. Does he mention Conservative policies that will make life easier for the people of the constituency, or that are already doing so? No.
“But we’ve got a by-election now. And we’ve got a simple choice,” he writes.
“This by-election is between me, who votes for Brexit in Parliament – and a Liberal Democrat, who will block Brexit in Parliament.”
What utter gibberish. Clearly he is terrified of Labour candidate Tomos Davies, who is the freshest face in the constituency’s politics and also the only one whose reputation is not stained by failure. And why not mention Brexit Party candidate Desmond Parkinson, who would also vote in Parliament to leave the European Union and whose party has enjoyed considerable success in the matter of weeks since it was formed?
The fact is that the result of this by-election will be dictated by several elements: Most important will be the different candidates’ policies regarding issues that affect people in the constituency. These are grassroots issues. People will want to know who supports the structures of our society – the services provided by local government, our education system, law and order. Which is the best party (among those standing) to combat climate change? We know the answer to all these questions is Labour. The Tories and Liberal Democrats colluded in dismantling the fabric of UK society between 2010 and 2015 and the Brexit Party is a one-issue organisation as its title clearly states.
Secondly, Brecon and Radnorshire is a marginal constituency where people vote tactically in order to achieve the result they want – but this has not worked well over the last decade or so. In 2010, a majority of people voted Liberal Democrat because they did not want a Conservative government – but the Liberal Democrat they supported (Roger Williams) then went into a coalition with the Conservatives that had been agreed by his leaders two months before the election. His supporters ended up with a Tory government in any case and the following five years were an appalling betrayal of their trust.
In 2015, the Liberal Democrats demanded that the election in Brecon and Radnorshire was a “two-horse race” between them and the Tories in a desperate bid to head off a growing vote for Labour in the constituency. Thousands of voters were fooled and Mr Davies slipped into Parliament on the back of the resulting split in the opposition vote.
And in 2017 the Liberal Democrats repeated the lie and Mr Davies increased his majority.
Finally, Brexit skews everything. There are supporters of every party who are reconsidering where they will put their vote on the basis of their opinion about whether the UK should stay in the European Union.
So where Mr Davies writes: “For the last 40 years, only Conservatives and Lib Dems have won here. It’ll be the same this time round,” he is talking through his hat.
He compounds the lie in the very next sentence, which ends with an ultimatum: “So if you want an MP who’ll back Brexit in Parliament, you’ve got to support me.”
This is a lie. Two parties in this election support Brexit no matter what – the Brexit Party and the Conservatives. Both will be happy to leave the EU without any deal to support UK businesses and the economy, and this could be disastrous for the majority of people here; we have already seen a large drop in production as a result of uncertainty, and what about all the international car manufacturers who are threatening to pull out?
The Liberal Democrats support remaining in the European Union because they think it will encourage people to vote for them – and let’s face it, their performance in the European Parliamentary election – even though no MEP will have any say on Brexit at all – suggests they are right. For a party that is struggling, with only 13 MPs in the Westminster Parliament, it could be a lifeline. But their policies have not changed and they would merrily jump right back into bed with the Conservatives if it meant they would have another taste of power.
None of these parties care about what happens to the people of the United Kingdom. They have ideological or selfish reasons for saying what they have. The only party interested in the well-being of the UK population, it seems, is Labour. That’s why Labour says it won’t support a ‘no deal’ Brexit that will harm the people, and will only support a deal that has a chance of maintaining living standards in the UK. It is also the reason Labour wants any Brexit proposals to go back to the electorate for a confirming vote, alongside the choice to remain in the EU if those proposals aren’t worth taking.
Mr Davies ignores all of that. His words: “A vote for anyone elsse will let the Lib Dems sneak through.
“We saw what happened in the Peterborough by-election a few weeks ago. People voted for the Brexit Party – and they got Labour.” This is a gross misinterpretation of events there. The Brexit Party attracted votes from traditional supporters of both the Conservatives and Labour. If that organisation had not stood a candidate, those votes would have remained in their traditional homes and it is likely that Labour would still have won.
“It’ll be just like that here,” writes Mr Davies. “A vote for the Brexit Party will mean that we end up with the Lib Dems.”
It’s like a bad attempt at brainwashing – or a return to what the Nazis called “The Big Lie”: Repeat a claim often enough and people will believe it.
This time it isn’t true.
“The Lib Dems have promised to do everything they can to stop Brexit. So another MP voting against Brexit will mean it could be delayed again – or even completely blocked.” Mr Davies writes as though any Brexit will be good for the UK. This is a lie.
“The Lib Dems are completely open about their plans to stop Brexit. So if you don’t want ANOTHER MP who’ll block Brexit, then you’ve got to support me.”
That’s his line: Don’t support the Brexit Party because he’ll give you exactly what they are offering. Support a convicted criminal so he can put your livelihood in jeopardy.
I have an alternative proposition.
Think for yourself.
Don’t let yourself be led by the nose, like a farm animal going to the slaughter, by these ideologically-obsessed suits whose only interest is lining their own pockets.
Vote for a candidate who will stand up for better services and living standards in Brecon and Radnorshire, and who will demand that Brexit works for all the people of the UK – not just the rich and selfish – or should be scrapped altogether if the people demand it.
Any other choice is insanity – and that especially includes voting for convicted expenses forger Chris Davies.
Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.
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