The elections on 22 May are vitally important, but they are not an isolated event; they are part of a wider strategy to achieve a Labour government that will deliver the opportunities and support that so many are crying out for.
We have a fight on our hands to win back councils like Redbridge and Milton Keynes and gain more seats in the European parliament, but the result if we manage it will be worth every door knocked and every leaflet posted. A Labour MEP in the south-west would give us representation in areas that are not currently supported by a Labour voice. A Labour council in Redbridge would give those who are struggling protection from the worst the Tories can throw at them. More councillors in post in our marginal seats across the country would give us the strong base we need to win back those seats and form a majority Labour government.
We are facing food poverty, extortionate rents, high bills and low wages – to name just a few of the problems that Ed Miliband has rightly highlighted. Only a Labour government will tackle these issues and ensure we are all better off.
As Milband pointed out at the manifesto launch yesterday, we are the only party that has answers to the cost of living crisis: an end to private rented sector rip-offs, an energy price freeze, free childcare and a jobs guarantee. And we are the only party that will fight to save our treasured National Health Service from total decimation by the Tories. The Liberal Democrats, much as they may try locally to distance themselves from their record in government, have enabled the Tories to implement nasty policies that are hitting the most vulnerable in society the hardest. We need to be tying them to their shocking record in government and not letting them get away with this.
These are the messages that we should be using as we knock on doors over the next few weeks, and right through until 7 May 2015. What we lack in big donations and media support, we make up for in dedicated activists giving up their time to knock on doors. It is up to us to deliver these messages and ensure Labour victories across the country.
Electing more Labour councillors and MEPs on 22 May will not only help us to protect those that need it most from the worst of the Tory cuts but will also help us to build our base ahead of 2015 and win a Labour government.
Our campaigning does not stop at 10pm on 22 May with the closure of the polling stations. We need to be out campaigning for a Labour majority in parliament on 23, 24 and 25 of May too. There will be no let-up from now on in, and it certainly will not be easy; but if we fight and if we win, the result will be quite literally life-changing for thousands of people.
Photo: UK Labour
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