Richmond Park by-election, an insider’s view

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I am writing this for my neighbours in Richmond Park. Tomorrow this constituency has the chance to do something important, to send a strong message to the Brexit theocracy that has usurped power that there can be -and will be- resistance to their incompetent tumble towards a hard Brexit.

I urge all of you not to miss this chance. To go out and vote.

By-elections do not greatly matter usually, they are symbolic affairs where the parties try to get a feel of what the public thinks, or local affairs, decided on local issues. Indeed it is a local issue that sparked this election (Heathrow expansion), but as all candidates are anti-Heathrow, this is not the defining factor at the ballot box.

Still, why does all this matter on a national and European level you may ask.

If Zac (the incumbent MP) is re-elected, it will verify Tory dominance in the face of a defunct opposition and a nascent LibDem revolt. A Zac win will make little in the way of news and will not bother Theresa May in the slightest. He is a Tory, will vote with the Tories, will vote for Article 50. He is supported by UKIP. He ran a disgraceful racist campaign for mayor. He will achieve nothing in preventing a Heathrow expansion. Do you really want to reward his stunt and allow him back into the Commons?

A win for Sarah Olney however (the Liberal Democrat candidate) will make national headlines and international news. It will be a strong message to Theresa May that her shambolic, devious and incompetent administration will face resistance in Westminster and the ballot box. She will be one more MP to vote against Article 50.

Do not miss your chance to send this message.

The Greens and progressives in the borough support Sarah. Labour has betrayed its supporters, offers unconditional support to Brexit and does not represent the constituency’s interests. A vote for the Labour candidate is a wasted vote, a vote of support -at worst- or acquiescence -at least- to the plans of the Brexiteers in No.10.

Resist, take your chance, say no to the disaster of a hard-Brexit.

Vote LibDem tomorrow.

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@iGlinavos

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Richmond Park is your chance to say ‘Enough’

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I live in North Barnes, this is part of the Richmond-Park constituency. As luck would have it, our Brexit supporting MP, ex-Tory Zac Goldsmith has resigned.

He has not resigned over his support for Brexit in direct contradiction to his constituents’ interests. He has resigned over the government’s apparent decision to authorise an extension of Heathrow airport.

I am not that bothered about Heathrow, while I sympathise with everyone around who cannot stand any more noise from planes over our heads.

I am bothered about Brexit. Mr Goldmshith is an example of new politics gone sour. Apart from being a posh Leaver, he ran a thoroughly disgusting mayoral campaign in 2016, which we lost to Sadiq Khan. He deserved to lose.

Now in an exercise in arrogance, instead of resigning the whip, he resigned his seat and seeks to be re-elected. For what? He cannot influence the Heathrow decision as an independent. The Tories have chosen not to oppose him. Why not? Because a perceived split in the Tory vote would hand the constituency back to the Liberal Democrats. Richmond had been a relatively safe Liberal seat up till 2010.

Labour is set to run a candidate, while the Greens probably will not.

None of the normal party politics matter in this case.

The constituency voted overwhelmingly for Remain. Mr Goldsmith does not represent us. Mr Goldsmith’s stance is an affront to the people of Richmond. His potential re-election would be an insult to every Remain voter.

As a British European I will never support a Tory Leaver. He does not represent us, or the thousands of Europeans who live with us, but cannot vote in this by-election.

The Liberal Democrats are the only force clearly opposed to Brexit. They are they only force that can send a message to the government and the world that the Brexit train-wreck must and can be stopped.

I urge everyone to join a #RemainAlliance against Brexit and support the Liberal Democrats and Sarah Olney in this election.

We make a stand against Brexit in Richmond.

For Britain

For Europe

For Remain

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@iGlinavos