Here’s a message from ‘Save Camden From HS2’ on this decisive issue for our Holborn and St Pancras constituency:
“Camden shock voting dilemma
4 May 2015
Sir Keir Starmer refuses to confirm he will vote against HS2
In a shocking development last night, Sir Keir Starmer refused to confirm or deny whether he would vote against the HS2 hybrid bill if elected to parliament.
Sir Keir is the Labour party candidate for Holborn and St Pancras and is likely to be elected to succeed Frank Dobson MP in the General Election on Thursday.
At the final hustings before the Election held at St. Luke’s church, Kentish Town last night, Camden residents were given the opportunity to question Labour, Conservative, Green, Liberal Democrat and UKIP candidates standing for election in Holborn and St Pancras.
Asked to provide a simple YES/NO answer, the candidates were asked whether, if elected, they would vote against the HS2 hybrid bill.
All the candidates or their representatives said “yes”, they would vote against the bill, except for Sir Keir, who refused to confirm his intentions either way. To shocked astonishment and disbelief from the audience, Sir Keir explained his view that voting against HS2 would be nothing more than a gesture and that his time would be better spent in trying to persuade the Labour front bench to mitigate the damage caused by HS2. This was not well received and repeated demands for Sir Keir to commit to voting against the bill were rejected, leading people to believe that he will use his vote to support Labour party policy, which currently promotes HS2.
Save Camden From HS2 can see no reason why Sir Keir, if elected, cannot work to achieve the best possible mitigation for Camden in conjunction with voting against the bill – as outgoing MP Frank Dobson has always done.
Indeed, Sir Keir’s position appears to be at odds with Camden Council, which is very clear in its united and consistent opposition to HS2.
And in stark contrast to Frank Dobson, who has consistently opposed HS2 both locally and in the House of Commons, we now face the prospect of his potential replacement voting to support a project that will shatter the lives of tens of thousands of Camden citizens for a generation or more.
What Sir Keir has failed to realise is that on Thursday, Camden citizens will be electing someone to represent and protect their interests, not issuing a fast-track career mandate to a Labour front bench or cabinet position.
We demand that Sir Keir commits to vote against HS2 when the hybrid bill comes before the House of Commons. This act is much more than a simple gesture: it is an essential requirement of any candidate who wishes to represent Holborn and St Pancras. This single issue is of such particular importance to the majority of people in the constituency that it seems perverse that someone who is seeking to gain our trust is undermining it from the outset.
The actions of our next MP will be pivotal in ensuring our long term prosperity and wellbeing, which at the present time hangs in the balance. We need an MP who will defend our position on all fronts. We urge readers of this newsletter to carefully consider all of the candidates’ commitments on HS2 before casting their vote on Thursday.
What do the other candidates say?
For more detail on all the candidates’ views, read our 2015 Election Special:
© 2015 Save Camden From HS2, all rights reserved.”