Today, as you may have seen in The Observer newspaper, we have announced our candidates.
When we launched our crowdfunder, we promised to use the money to back candidates who pledge to support a full and free vote on the Brexit deal. We also promised to work with organisations with the same goals and to promote tactical voting.
We’re excited to say we are announcing the first set of candidates we will back – all of them in a fight for their seat and needing a tactical vote swing. This is an excellent group of talented candidates that agree with our position that MPs must have the right to a full and free vote on the terms of the deal, with all options on the table.
We developed criteria to pick these individuals, and we are ready to back candidates who:
- Support a real choice on the final deal and ready to fight Extreme Brexit
- Are fighting a winnable seat but not a dead certainty
- Have an immaculate track record
We also decided to give a preference to candidates that are opposed by a leading contender in favour of extreme Brexit, to stop candidates not in favour of a choice on the final deal. We have also given preference to candidates at threat from UKIP withdrawal from some parliamentary seats to lend support to other candidates. All our actions will of course be fully compliant with Electoral Commission rules and other relevant legislation.
Here is the list of Best for Britain Champions:
Tom Brake, Carshalton and Wallington, Lib Dem
Kevin Brennan, Cardiff West, Labour
Nick Clegg, Sheffield Hallam, Lib Dem
Fabian Hamilton, Leeds North East, Labour
Mark Hunter, Cheadle, Lib Dem
Rupa Huq, Ealing Central and Acton, Labour
Peter Kyle, Hove, Labour
Clive Lewis, Norwich South, Labour
Caroline Lucas, Brighton Pavilion, Green
Kerry McCarthy, Bristol East, Labour
Sarah Olney, Richmond Park, Lib Dem
Tulip Siddiq, Hampstead and Kilburn, Labour
Andy Slaughter, Hammersmith, Labour
Lisa Smart, Hazel Grove, Lib Dem
Jo Stevens, Cardiff Central, Labour
Gareth Thomas, Harrow West, Labour
They will receive support for their campaigns in different ways, through endorsements, campaign support and in some cases events or visits to the constituency by Best for Britain.
This marks the second of our 3 main workstreams:
Youth and women voter registration and turnout.
Earlier this week, we gave three grants to three brilliant grassroots organisations: Bite the Ballot, My Life My Say and Citizens UK. They will be working hard to increase the number of young people on the electoral register across the country. We’re also pushing social media adverts to encourage young people are registered to vote. This is crucial to ensure the voices of young people and women are heard during this election. More on youth and women in the coming week.
Backing political champions
We will be touring marginal constituencies, over the coming weeks of the campaign, visiting some of our champions as well as other constituencies to be announced.
Fighting Extreme Brexit
We are also launching a tactical voting website to show voters how to vote in their constituency for the candidate that is most likely to fight Extreme Brexit and to keep the Brexit process transparent, open and democratic. We will also focus on more marginal seats prioritising our resources on the most strategic choices – seats that are important and winnable.
It is crucial that the next Parliament has independent MPs who will ensure the next government is held to account in the crucial negotiations on our future relationship with Europe. By backing our champions and with the launch of our tactical vote website we can make sure we win this fight.
Join us, spread the word and get your friends involved – only 25 days to go!
PS – if you haven’t seen it already, there was a fascinating feature piece on Gina, her life, court case and the campaign in The Guardian yesterday.