One of the best things about Caroline Lucas, the Green MP, is her independence from party whips.
You can always be sure that she will vote in Parliament for her constituency, for her conscience, and for her Green principles of equality and ecology.
When the anti-Green attack unit set-up by Labour claim that a vote for the Green Party will land you with a Conservative government, it makes me wonder – so what will a vote for Labour get you?
In Lewisham West & Penge, it has delivered us Jim Dowd. He seems like a decent person, but according to the Public Whip web site he has voted loyally for his party line in 99% of the votes. So you can be fairly sure that a vote for Jim Dowd is a vote for whatever programme Ed Miliband leads the party on.
Caroline, pictured below, is a different story, and was named MP of the year for her work.
Here are some examples of Jim Dowd’s votes on controversial issues, taken from They Work For You. Do you agree with him on these?
He voted for:
- the Iraq war, and against investigating it
- replacing the Trident nuclear missiles
- foundation hospitals, further privatising the NHS
- tuition fees and top-up fees
- introducing ID cards and a national database
He voted against:
- measures to reduce tax avoidance
- higher duties on flights and petrol
- reforms to the House of Lords
Lastly, he didn’t even turn up to debate and vote on protections for private tenants against revenge evictions!
Did you oppose the war in Iraq and tuition fees, and do you want serious action on climate change and tax avoidance? You may be tempted to vote for Jim Dowd because Labour are slightly better than the Conservatives on these issues. But will Jim Dowd know those were your reasons? No, he will assume you support his track record, that track record you disagree with? He can carry on voting against your beliefs happy in the knowledge that voters will back him.
If you agree with me that Tony Blair should be investigated for launching an illegal war in Iraq, that we need to reverse decades of privatisation in our NHS, and that private tenants need protection against revenge evictions, then vote for me and the Green Party. It’s the only intelligible choice. Even if Jim Dowd wins, he will at least know where you stand when he goes to vote in the next Parliament.
If everybody voted for policies, not parties, then this web site suggests I would become the first Green MP for Lewisham West and Penge, delivering the change you want for the area and the UK.