While the Green Party’s electoral success in 40 years has been presentable, our impact on the national political debate has been profound. In considering what influence we can wield and which elections we can win in the era of Corbyn we need to avoid factional delusions.
It is often said by party members that a particular strategy, tactic or policy should be debated at one of the bi-annual conferences. The most obvious recent example is the issue of progressive alliances.
Like most members I believe that the actions and statements of our leadership and senior politicians must be rooted in decisions taken democratically by party structures including conference, the Executive and Regional Council.
But we have to realise that politics isn’t a calm and linear business. You don’t spend two years moving from conference motion A to national strategy B and politician action C and then achieve desired result D.
In May I set out five qualities I was looking for in the next leader of the Green Party. Having read their statements and listened at a hustings, I’ve now decided how I’m going to vote.
In politics, as in sport and Eurovision, we all like to fit the facts to our pre-conceived ideas. Tribes and factions interpret results as a vindication of their point of view.
I’m pleased to back most of the ‘10 by 2020‘ Mayoral Safer Cycling Challenge, published yesterday by Stop Killing Cyclists.
The Green Party’s manifesto and key issues for next year’s elections aren’t in the gift of Mayoral candidates, so why develop and push ideas in the selection process?
I’m putting myself forward to be the Green Party’s candidate for the Mayor of London in 2016, and to be a candidate for the London Assembly list. I’m standing because… Greens can give London hope – that we can reclaim our homes from oligarchs and speculators, hope that we can take serious action on climate change, and hope that politicians can co-operate with communities and social movements instead of ignoring or trampling over them. I can persuade London that Green politicians working with grassroots campaigns provide the only hope of solving our housing crisis. We are the only party with the policies to tackle the vested interests of speculators, developers and landlords. I am standing as an experienced spokesperson with policy expertise, as a candidate who knows City Hall and so can hit the ground running, and as a community activist rooted in local campaigns on housing, the living wage, air pollution…
Last night I spoke to the London Young Greens about my experience coming third in Lewisham West & Penge, and what I learned as joint co-ordinator of the London Green Party during our biggest ever campaign.
I’m going to get out on the stump on Penge High Street, and I’m inviting other candidates to join me, after all but one of the open hustings for Lewisham West & Penge have been cancelled.
Would you like to cycle through Forest Hill, pictured above? What about crossing the road, waiting in the cattle pens breathing in illegal levels of air pollution, or trying to cross where there aren’t any lights? We need safer, nicer streets for people.