“Unacceptable obstacles were placed in the way of this grassroots campaign, undermining the democratic process… This was not a fair contest.”
Beth Winter MP has released the following statement after narrowly missing out on the selection of the new Merthyr Tydfil and Upper Cynon seat, created by the boundary review. Beth, the standing MP for Cynon Valley, faced neighboring MP Gerald Jones in a contest with a clear lack of democratic process that’s been mired by allegations of a stitch up.
I’m disappointed by this very close result and the unjust manner in which it came about, which leaves major questions outstanding.
In this contest, I sought reselection as Labour’s candidate on a platform of solidarity with striking rail workers, nurses, and teaching staff, all of who I have been proud to stand with on the picket line.
I have campaigned for properly funded public services paid for by taxing the rich, an extension of workers’ rights including a £15 per hour living wage, the renationalisation of our public services and a ‘green new deal’ to deliver a jobs-led economic recovery.
However, unacceptable obstacles were placed in the way of this grassroots campaign, undermining the democratic process.
The online only process was bulldozed through in just two weeks, with no face-to-face hustings.
This was not a fair contest, and I will be taking advice and soundings in the days ahead about my next steps.
In the meantime, I want to thank each and every member of my campaign team, as well as all Labour Party members in Merthyr Tydfil and Upper Cynon who participated in this contest.
To my Cynon Valley constituents I remain your MP and will be until the General Election. I will continue to work alongside you for positive change for our valley.
The fight for a Labour Party victory in Merthyr Tydfil and Upper Cynon, and the return of a Labour government at the next General Election remains my priority. Solidarity.