If you are under 30, I’d rather you voted against me than not vote at all!
I know, it’s an odd thing for a candidate in next week’s election to say, but it’s something I really care about.
I know people are turned off by party politics. I hate that kind of politics too – it seems so divorced from people’s lives. Many people feel their MPs don’t really represent them. They feel their vote doesn’t count in our first past the post electoral system. Most MPs, and almost certainly our government, will be elected despite more than half of the population voting against them.
It makes me angry that many politicians ignore the needs of people under 30 as they are less likely to vote.
But voting is important. Your MP will have a say in whether the NHS gets funded or cut more. Whether we enshrine human rights into British Law post Brexit. Whether we support poor countries and welcome refugees. Whether we invest in clean air and take climate change seriously. Whether we create more affordable and social housing. Whether we reinstate Educational Maintenance Allowances and nurses training bursaries, or abolish university tuition fees. And so much more.
I’m part of a “progressive alliance” of people across parties– from the Greens who stood down for me to many members of the Lib Dem and Labour Party who actively support me as the person with the best chance of beating Jeremy Hunt!
So please vote next week. Don’t vote for a politician or a party – vote for the person who will stand up on the issues that you care about.
I obviously hope that’s me. But if not, please still vote!
Dr Louise Irvine
PS, just in case you’re wondering:
- I will campaign passionately against the cuts that are destroying our NHS and against its privatisation
- I want to see our human rights laws strengthened not weakened – we should lead the world on this
- I am a strong supporter of international aid to help the poorest people in the world, and am disgusted at our refusal to help refugees from Syria
- Clean air is vital to our health and I will campaign tirelessly on environmental issues
- I believe we need more affordable houses and more social housing, not more built for buy-to-let landlords to make even more profit.
- I will campaign for electoral reform
- I support a “soft Brexit” to maintain the strongest possible ties with Europe.
I will fight for students who need it to be entitled to maintenance grants and reinstate the bursaries for trainee nurses and for the abolition of university tuition fees.