As we all know, the General Election is upon us. We’ve seen a number of posts online, and had a number of conversations offline, where we’ve been politely asked if we were standing in Renfrewshire East.
Some of this interaction is in the context of people who have asked as they want to vote Green, some have asked because they don’t want to split a Yes vote, and some have asked because they want to have all the information in front of them. I’ll try and address all of these positions.
We are not, unfortunately, standing in Renfrewshire East in the 2015 General Election. As a group within the Scottish Green Party, we only came into our current standing post-referendum. As such, the first thing we would have done as a group of people was to stand in the General Election – we decided that we were not ready to do that as a group and we chose to focus on the Scottish Parliament election in 2016 and the Council elections in 2017.
Had we decided to stand, we would have campaigned on a Green platform – a £10 minimum wage by 2020, bringing the railways into public hands, and all the other great policies included in our 2015 manifesto. And, as a member of the electorate, that would have been why you would have been giving us your vote.
But we’re not standing. We often wish we were but we didn’t have the resources, nous, or internal organisation to do the manifesto, and the party, justice this time.
We’re sorry you won’t have the opportunity to Vote Green in Renfrewshire East in 2015 but we are committing to providing you with that opportunity in every subsequent election.
On the subject of a split Yes vote – we do not see the General Election as a re-run of the referendum and, as I have said above, we would have brought our distinct manifesto to this election and campaigned on that platform.
We do not endorse any one party over another in any part of the country and we won’t be doing that in Renfrewshire East either – each voter has their own decision to make at the ballot box and they should use that vote in the way they see fit and that is as true for all of us as it is for you.
If you’re keen to have a Green presence in East Renfrewshire and are keen to get involved – get in touch!