I have recently read disturbing reports suggesting that the Conservative Party has a lack of commitment towards winning the forthcoming by-election in Oldham East and Saddleworth.
There has been a lot written, not only in the national newspapers, but also on this site, which has questioned our Party’s appetite to compete, even with speculation that some would prefer another party to be victorious or, at least, that they should not lose too badly.
I write this article as an entreaty to all members, supporters and activists of our great Party, a Party which has amply demonstrated that it has a formidable by-election winning team and strategy over the past few years. Do not let the murky waters of coalition politics or the ill-informed media obscure your vision of the prize which is within our grasp of winning in Oldham East and Saddleworth. I have spoken to CCHQ staffers who are giving up their Christmas holiday to run a full and effective campaign to win the seat. Our campaign has already delivered four leaflets and is now delivering the election address, but we need to do more.
We were just 2,400 votes behind Labour at the General Election last May which, if turnout is reduced, could now be far less in actuality. Without a concerted Conservative effort we are gifting this seat to the Socialists, something I personally find unpalatable.
I will be travelling up to Oldham today with a team of my campaign activists - these are the battle-hardened veterans who helped us to achieve a 12% swing from Labour in North West Leicestershire at the General Election.
We may not all be enamoured by compromises being made due to being in coalition Government but we are, I hope, all dedicated and committed Conservatives and our candidate, Kashif Ali, has the right to expect and demand our full support. I intend to give it to him and I hope you will too. For those who oppose any thought of coalition candidates at the next General Election I can assure you a poor Conservative result in this by-election makes this more, not less, likely.
There are already too many Labour MPs in Parliament given the damage the last Government inflicted across all areas of our society, let there not be another one. All that socialism gives us is an equal share of misery and all that is required for bad things to happen is for good men (and women) to do nothing.
Let's get more troops on the ground and fight to win Oldham East and Saddleworth for the Conservative Party.