With just twelve weeks to go to polling day, now’s the time to start a campaign blog. In this blog, I’ll recount my campaigning activities and address issues I’ve encountered both on the doorstep and in public meetings.
Things are indeed beginning to hot up. This weekend was the congress of the Party of European Socialists in Milan, where Labour and its sister parties from across Europe adopted a common manifesto for reforming the European Union.
Next week will be the equivalent on the centre right: the European People’s Party congress in Dublin. But there’s one crucial difference: the British Conservatives will be absent from that meeting, because of Cameron’s decision a few years ago to pull them out of the EPP. Because of this move, the Conservatives can’t match Labour’s network and channels of influence across Europe. Cameron is isolated, and his aspirations for reform (admittedly in a peculiar direction) are not exactly supported by sympathetic allies!
Things are hotting up on the campaign trail here in Yorkshire too. Just this week, besides knocking on doors, I’ll be at events in York, Grimsby, Leeds, Colne Valley, Shipley and Hull.
Throughout the campaign, I will of course be making the case as to why it’s in Britain’s best interest to stay in the European Union, how the EU is in a continual process of reform, which reforms we should advocate and what we should oppose. But, above all, I’ll be listening to peoples’ views and aspirations, their fears and concerns, their ideas and hopes — and reporting on them here.