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Sunday, 20 April 2014

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Carlisle's General Election candidates

Eight candidates have stepped forward to contest the Carlisle seat at the General Election on May 6.

Liberal Democrat Neil Hughes was unavailable for interview despite our best efforts to contact him.

More candidates could still come forward.
 

NAME: Michael Boaden

Party: Labour

Age: 46

Born: Ipswich

Lives: Carlisle

Job: Formerly an advocate with Icas, now campaigning full time

Family: Living with fiancée. Two step children.

When and why did you join the Labour Party? In 1983 because I felt it was the party that most closely represented my values.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Nelson Mandela. He demonstrated what is possible through politics in terms of transition in South Africa.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? To move Carlisle forward so that it is perceived as a modern, progressive city.

What is the main issue facing the country? The progression from recession to recovery. We must ensure the recovery is not only firmly based but sustained and not put at risk.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Economic progress. The Labour government has given us a platform to build on with investment in the academies and transport.

Why should people vote for you? I will always stand up for their interests. I will always work hard for Carlisle and will never let anybody down. I am a very honest, straightforward person.

NAME: Peter Howe

Party: Independent

Age: 53

Born: London

Lives: Little Corby

Job: Proprietor of Trafford Fireplaces

Family: Married with two daughters

When and why did you decide to stand as an Independent?: Within the last year when I realised I couldn’t vote for any of them. Most people feel the same way.

Who is your political hero/heroine? James Callaghan. He was an outstanding Prime Minister who came from nowhere, with no education, and put himself through university. There’s quite a story there.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? National Insurance, so that it doesn’t deter employers from employing people full time.

What is the main issue facing the country? Debt. There is no debt repayment plan from the main parties. They just plan on borrowing more.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Employment.

Why should people vote for you? Because in 23 years Eric Martlew voted against the party only twice. An Independent will vote for Carlisle every single time.
 

NAME: John Metcalfe

Party: Socialist and Trade Unionist

Age: 46

Born: Dumfries (family from Carlisle)

Lives: Wigton Road, Carlisle

Job: Train driver

Family: Married with four children

When and why did you decide to stand as a Socialist and Trade Unionist? Following the European elections last year. There is growing disenchantment with mainstream parties. There are no options on offer other than centre or right of centre.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Nelson Mandela. Because of his sheer determination he was able to change what was a fascist society.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? I would reverse rail privatisation. It has been an expensive disaster.

What is the main issue facing the country? The economy. We are in effect a bankrupt society. Instead of doing something to change that, the main parties are tinkering. We need a fundamental change in taxation and a redistribution of wealth.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Lack of job opportunities, particularly for young people.

Why should people vote for you? Because I’m offering something radically different.
 

NAME: Michael Owen

Party: UK Independence Party

Age: 68

Born: Smethwick, West Midlands

Lives: Scotby

Job: Retired company director

Family: Married with four children

When and why did you join UKIP? About eight years ago when I was living in Cheshire. I was rather fed up with the old, failed political parties.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Without a doubt Winston Churchill. Because of the work he did through the war, his contribution to world peace and his vision and oratory.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? The Government.

What is the main issue facing the country? It is difficult to split the economy and immigration. The economy affects absolutely everybody. Immigration because the main failed parties won’t face up to it.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Lack of investment in infrastructure. There has been so much wasted money and wasted opportunities.

Why should people vote for you? Because I’m not a politician.

NAME: John Reardon

Party: Green Party

Age: 34

Born: Carlisle

Lives: Currock, Carlisle

Job: History and RE teacher at Newman School

Family: Married

When and why did you join the Greens? In 2008 because I believe they are the only party to tackle the economic and climate issues.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Helen Suzman [South African anti-apartheid campaigner]. She used the Parliamentary system to fight apartheid and push for democracy.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? The voting system. Bring in proportional representation to ensure Parliament reflects how the country votes. We have a crisis of democracy.

What is the main issue facing the country? There are three all connected – an indebted failed economy, the climate crisis and equality.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Affordable housing and job creation.

Why should people vote for you? I’m from Carlisle and I have a proven track record of effective political representation and getting things done.
 

NAME: Paul Stafford

Party: British National Party

Age: 51

Born: Darlington

Lives: Wigton

Job: Electrician

Family: Married with three sons

When and why did you join the BNP? Ten years ago because of immigration. I had been working in London and saw the effects first hand.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Winston Churchill because of what he achieved in World War II.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? Getting us out of Europe. We are losing control of our destiny. Unelected bureaucrats are making the rules. I’m a big believer in democracy.

What is the main issue facing the country? Immigration. It’s the numbers. There are parts of England now where the English are a minority and those areas are getting bigger.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Getting the bypass open. That will have an impact on business and create jobs.

Why should people vote for you? There’s not a lot of difference between the old parties. If you want the same, vote for the same old parties. If you want a change, vote for me.

NAME: John Stevenson

Party: Conservative

Age: 46

Born: Aberdeen

Lives: Great Corby

Job: Partner in Bendles Solicitors

Family: Living with partner

When and why did you the Conservatives? I was a member as a student and joined the local party in 1994. I’ve always had underlying beliefs that concur broadly with Conservative philosophy.

Who is your political hero/heroine? Mikhail Gorbachev [last president of the USSR]. Because he had such an impact, creating freedom for millions of people.

If you could change one thing by being MP, what would it be? To give more power back to local communities.

What is the main issue facing the country? An over-bearing state interfering in people’s lives through regulations and targets. We need to give individuals more freedom and responsibility.

What is the main issue facing Carlisle? Getting the local economy going and improving standards in secondary education.

Why should people vote for you? I’m not a tribal politician. I would be there to represent all the people and be an advocate for Carlisle and our county.

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