Polling stations are now open across the country for the European and local elections. Here are our six reasons to cast your vote for Conservative candidates today:
1) Conservative councils cost less. On average, Conservative-controlled councils charge £89 a year less than Labour-controlled councils on a Band D home – and £106 a year less than Liberal Democrat-controlled councils. Here’s a classic example of what happened when Hammersmith and Fulham changed hands from Labour to Tory:
2) Every council tax freeze that a Labour or Lib Dem council boasts about was made possible by Conservatives in government in Westminster. Why not vote for the real thing locally, too?
3) Only the Conservatives can and will give us an in/out referendum on EU membership. Whether you want to leave the EU asap, or whether you believe it can successfully be reformed, the only way to get either outcome is by voting Conservative.
4) Tories are a pain in Brussels’ neck. I want to leave the EU, but until that happens (see point 3)) I want our representatives to make life difficult for the integrationist machine. Stopping treaties, refusing to put British taxpayers’ money into Euro-bailouts, protecting the rebate and cutting the EU budget are just a few of the steps in the right direction. Tory MEPs like Dan Hannan, Syed Kamall and Martin Callanan walk the walk – instead of talking the talk and then not turning up when it’s voting time.
5) Look at what the Conservatives have achieved so far. Even with the limits of Coalition, we’ve seen hard-won improvements in the state of the nation. Record numbers in work, vast increases in the number of jobs, growth restored, the deficit falling, taxes down and more. Would I like us to go further and do more? Sure I would. The only way to do that is to get more Conservative votes, more Conservative representatives at every level and eventually win a majority. The bluer the country gets, the more radical we can and will be.
6) None of us can afford any more of Labour’s mismanagement, waste and meddling. Like any election, today plays its part in what happens next year. More Conservative councillors and MEPs not only means lower taxes and a better deal now, it means Ed Miliband will have a harder time in 2015. It’s a stark choice – help keep Ed Miliband out of Downing Street, or help give him more troops to fight for higher taxes, more red tape, more government intervention in your life and no in/out EU referendum.
I could have added point 7), which is that I’m standing for Streatham Hill ward, Lambeth, and my colleague Harry Phibbs is standing in Ravenscourt Park ward, Hammersmith & Fulham, but I’m not sure that’s directly relevant to the majority of ConHome readers. On my street, in my borough, just as in every other across the country, the precise politics are local but the big issues are common to us all. Today is a choice between big, wasteful government and a more affordable, more democratic way of life. I’ll be voting Conservative to get the latter – and I hope you will, too.