Friday, 19 September 2014
Statement from the Electoral Reform Society
Immediate release 09:45 19th September 2014
Contact: Will Brett (email@example.com / 07979 696 265)
Time to give all UK citizens a say
Commenting on the need for a UK-wide Constitutional Convention in the wake of the Scottish independence referendum, Katie Ghose (Chief Executive of the Electoral Reform Society) said:
"This referendum has demonstrated that when it comes to deciding the future of our country, people want to be asked. It would be a terrible waste if we do not build on that passion by ensuring everyone in the UK, and not just Scots, have a say in where power lies.
"Now is not the time for top-down commands on our constitution, issued by political leaders in the immediate, frenzied aftermath of this momentous vote. The future shape of the country is too important to be rushed through Parliament without consulting the people.
"We need a UK-wide, citizen-led Constitutional Convention to determine where power lies in the future. We can draw on international examples to create a process which does justice to people's passion for change.
"Such a process needs clarity of purpose, and certainty about how its conclusions will be taken forward. It needs the full support of all the political parties, but it must also retain its independence from them.
"Above all, a UK Constitutional Convention must capitalise on the enormous amounts of interest and passion sparked in Scotland by the independence referendum, and bring that passion for determining our political future to the rest of the United Kingdom."
For more information, interviews and comment, contact Will Brett on 07979 696 265 / firstname.lastname@example.org
- Last week The Times published a letter from the Electoral Reform Society and 18 other democracy experts, which called for a UK-wide Constitutional Convention whether or not Scotland votes for independence.
- Citizen-led Constitutional Conventions have been successfully used around the world to settle where power should lie. For a recent example, see the Irish Constitutional Convention (https://www.constitution.ie). For more information about Constitutional Conventions and what this would look like for the United Kingdom, see http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmselect/cmpolcon/writev/constconv/m24.htm See also the Irish Constitutional Convention process.
Monday, 15 September 2014
Friday, 12 September 2014
Thursday, 11 September 2014
At 7pm on Mon. 15th September, Cambridge Green Party will have a 'hustings' meeting to grill its potential candidate for the Parliamentary seat, Dr. Rupert Read, who is a Reader in Philosophy at the University of East Anglia. Dr. Read is well-known to many Cambridge voters and to the media as the recent lead-candidate for the Green Party in the European Elections: Read came within 1% of being elected MEP. Now he hopes to stand in Cambridge, for MP.
Cambridge was the Green Party's 3rd strongest result in the whole UK, after only Brighton Pavillion (where Caroline Lucas was elected as the Greens' first MP) and Norwich South, at the 2010 General Election. This May, the Green Party scored nearly 20% in both the European Elections and the Local Elections. And according to the Green Party's own national geodemographic database, Cambridge has the strongest potential of any seat in the entire UK to become a longterm Green stronghold.
Ellisif Wasmuth, Returning officer of Cambridge Green Party, said: "In the Green Party, being the only candidate at a selection does not guarantee selection, there is always an option for members to vote for 'None of the above'. As a party with a strong commitment to local democracy it is important for us to create fora like this where political discussion can take place, and I anticipate a lively hustings. We are very excited to have Rupert Read put himself forward for Cambridge, and look forward to having the chance to question him at this hustings meeting."
Rupert Read, who is also national Transport Spokesperson for the Green Party, said: "I anticipate that we will be discussing transport as one of the key topics of the campaign, at this hustings meeting. The Green Party is of course THE Party to back if you are concerned about traffic congestion and air pollution, if you want to take the railways back into public ownership, if you back much better facilities for cyclists and safer streets for pedestrians, and if you care about resisting damaging new road-schemes. I am looking forward immensely to discussing these and other matters of great importance to Cambridge with the Green Party membership on Monday evening."
Dr. Read continued, "Cambridge is one of the Green Party's best prospects in the entire country, at the General Election. Voters have lost faith in the old parties and in the vagaries of tactical voting; that's why the Green Party has been experiencing a surge in the polls. Cambridge's voters have the chance to do something extraordinary, next May."
Cambridge Greens will be voting by post for who to have as their parliamentary candidate, beginning soon after the hustings. The result will be publicly declared at a meeting with Green Party Leader Natalie Bennett, on the morning of October 6th.
Monday, 8 September 2014
Saturday, 30 August 2014
Wednesday, 27 August 2014
Thursday, 14 August 2014
My line here is supported by this new report from the world-experts on the political economy of post-growth, Peter Victor and Tim Jackson: http://www.prosperitas.org.uk/SIGMA#.U-yiiqPCcug
Wednesday, 30 July 2014
Wednesday, 9 July 2014
Monday, 26 May 2014
I want to thank every single person who voted Green on May 22, here in the East. You have contributed to a movement that is growing, and will only continue to grow: for Green is the future, if there is to be a future at all.
It is terrifying that a Party whose basis is victim-blaming and which denies the very reality of dangerous human-influenced climate chaos has done so well at these elections (and some of the Conservative Party here are no different, by the way). I blame the tiny handful of multi-millionaires who bankroll the Party that shall remain nameless, and the national media for giving them bucketloads of coverage while ignoring the rise of the Green Party in the opinion polls during the campaign. I hope that once people realise what the Party that shall remain nameless actually stands for they will turn away from it in disgust, and turn to the Green Party, which offers a positive alternative to the old, failed parties.As for me: I am so sad not to have been given the wonderful right to represent this Region at the European Parliament. While I will remain politically active, and may well seek to enter Westminster sooner rather than later (after a holiday!), this is goodbye to European-level electoral politics for me. I don't want to outstay my welcome. I've given it two great shots, and come close both times. Now, I leave it to younger others to do what is necessary: to stand for election to the European Parliament and to win for Green, so that together we can make the changes that are necessary, in order to save the future.
Saturday, 24 May 2014
Friday, 23 May 2014
The Green Party is celebrating a strong set of local election results in Norwich.
The party increased its majority in all five of the wards it was defending and also increased its city-wide vote to 30%, despite a strong challenge by Labour who were quoted as confident of taking two wards from the Greens.
For the Norwich City Council area as a whole, Labour took 35% to the Greens' 30% but for the Norwich South Parliamentary constituency Greens are ahead by 35% to 34%.
Three Green councillors were re-elected (Lesley Grahame in Thorpe Hamlet, Ash Haynes in Town Close and Simeon Jackson in Mancroft) and new Green councillors were elected in two wards: Tim Jones in Nelson and Sandra Bogelein in Wensum.
Andrew Boswell, Leader of the Green Party City Councillors, said:
"This is a fantastic set of results for the Green Party. Voters have recognised the strong track record of Green Councillors in representing their communities and re-elected Greens with increased majorities in all five of our wards.
"I'm delighted at the strong support we've received for our policies on ending zero hours contracts, opposing overdevelopment around Norwich and improving democracy on these issues. We will continue to challenge the ruling Labour Cabinet on these issues and be a strong, responsible opposition.
"I'd like to thank everyone who voted Green in this election and all the party members and supporters who helped our campaign."
The Greens obtained increased local election votes in many parts of Eastern region. The party won its first seats on Babergh council (Suffolk) and Epping Forest (Essex) and defended its Rochford council seat with a big majority.
Adrian Ramsay, regional Campaign Manager for the Green Party, said: "These strong results - combined with opinion polls from recent weeks - suggest that we have an excellent chance of making a breakthrough at European level in Eastern region and seeing Rupert Read elected as the region's first Green MEP on Sunday evening."
Thursday, 22 May 2014
Craig, a former ambassador and human rights activist says:
"So who should those of us living in England vote for tomorrow? I intend to vote Green – it seems to me that in England that is the best way to give a positive expression to the discontent with mainstream parties. I particularly hope that those who have the opportunity to vote for Rupert Read in the East of England will do so. Their support for renationalizing the railways would be enough for me, but actually I find myself in agreement with the large majority of their platform."
See Craig's full article here:
Wednesday, 21 May 2014
Former Labour MP Dr. Gibson has put his name to a letter in support of lead candidate Rupert Read.
Other notable signatories include Sir Jonathon Porritt, former chair of the Sustainable Development Commission, the human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell and the journalist and author George Monbiot.
In the letter they urge readers, whichever Party they normally vote for and whichever they might vote for at the General Election next year, to consider voting Green this time. That's because the Euro elections are run on a proportional representation voting system which gives the Greens, as a smaller Party, a fairer chance of winning a seat. The Greens already have MEPs representing the neighbouring constituencies of South-East and London.
Dr Read can join them with only an extra 1% more of the vote than he achieved at the last Euro election. He said: "I feel honoured to have this distinguished group behind me, but it's especially exciting to have the backing of people like Ian Gibson and Peter Tatchell who have previously been prominent themselves in other political parties."
Wednesday, 14 May 2014
DAILY EXPRESS interview Green Party Leader!: http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/475832/Ukip-s-divisive-politics-are-driving-voters-to-Greens-says-party-leader-Natalie-Bennett
I was present at the Yarmouth meeting mentioned here by Natalie. It was indeed disturbing to hear from experts at the front line in our Region of how migrants are suffering discrimination, right now, and of how it is tending to get worse...
Tuesday, 13 May 2014
Police have visited a Green Party blogger in Cambridgeshire after a UKIP councillor objected to his Tweets.
The Guardian reports that Michael Abberton was invited by the officers to remove criticism of UKIP from social media, though no offence had been committed.
Mr Abberton explained that his comments had already been retweeted and he no longer had control over them. The officers, who were reportedly polite and professional, were particularly concerned about the retweet of a faked poster giving 10 reasons to vote for Ukip, such as scrapping paid maternity leave and raising income tax for the poorest 88% of Britons.
The Green Party's lead candidate for the Euro elections in the east of England, Rupert Read, said:
"Criticism of UKIP is not only legitimate, it is essential! The real election battle now here in the East is between Greens and UKIP. It is very disturbing that the police got in the way of it - and very telling that UKIP tried in an authoritarian manner to get them to do so."
Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green party, said:
"This police action is both disturbing and surprising. That an apparently general complaint from a political party about not liking what was said about them could have led to a police visit that many would find intimidating is an extremely serious incident that demands immediate investigation. Free speech is a precious right that we must defend."
http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/may/12/support-labour-drops-tories-lead-guardian-icm-poll?CMP=twt_gu makes some very encouraging reading for the Green Party:"ICM...asked...about voting intentions for nextweek's European elections. With only 37% of electors suggesting they arecertain to cast their ballot, such projections inescapably depend on fewerrespondents than those for Westminster."The Tories are up two on April, which puts them on 27%, and in a virtual dead heat with Ukip, which has bounced up four in the European stakes to stand at 26%. Labour sinks by 12 points on April, to 24%, with appreciable proportions of the party's 2010 votes moving to Ukip and the GREENS. "Together with Lib Dem defectors – Clegg's party languishes on 7% – this helps push the GREENS up four and into a clear fourth place, on 10%." Overall there has been a gradual upward movement in most polls (seelink, showing that we have momentum: pic.twitter.com/zX9vSNxWlB ) and if we reach the 10% thre
shold, then we'llbe seeing the first Green MEP being elected next Thursday on May 22nd! And that would be me...Caroline Lucas was first elected in 1999 by a margin of 0.01%... Every vote counts...
Monday, 12 May 2014
Sunday, 11 May 2014
To mark #NationalChildrensDay! I have released a report on the crisis facing children and families in the UK and our policies to address it. We must take children’s rights seriously and the Greens are the only party doing so.