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Call for political parties in Brighton and Hove to unite against Tories
A council leader has called on opposing political parties to unite in a bid to oust Conservative MPs from Brighton and Hove at the next election.
City council leader Jason Kitcat said that political leaders should put aside “party tribalism” and work together to prevent a repeat of the 2010 election when the Tories took two of the three seats in the city.
Writing on his blog, Coun Kitcat advised Labour against wasting huge resources campaigning on all three of the city’s seats only to finish their campaign without a city MP.
He said the Green Party would “throw everything we have at Brighton Pavilion” but denied that his blog implied that they would prioritise Caroline Lucas’s seat and allow Labour a free run at regaining their Hove and Kemptown seats.
Labour figures in the city rejected the call and said there would be no pacts or backroom deals.
The three Brighton seats sit high among the priorities nationally for Labour in a recently released list of target seats.
In his blog, Coun Kitcat said a “broader electoral effort” than just Labour voters was needed to ensure progressive MPs were elected, and it required Greens, trade unionists and disaffected Lib Dems to pull together.
He wrote there was a “progressive majority” in the city with the “vast majority” of residents against the Coalition parties and their policies.
In the 2010 election, more than half of all voters plumped for Coalition parties in Brighton Kemptown and Hove.
Coun Kitcat said: “It’s not tribalist to have a mature debate about how this city can ensure progressive politics succeed in the 2015 elections.
“My blog merely reaffirms my personal view that Greens will be very keen to defend Caroline’s seat, but makes no comment nor commitment on how resources will be allocated to other seats we are likely to contest.”
Conservative deputy leader Garry Peltzer Dunn said Coun Kitcat was “clutching at straws”.
He said: “To make these sort of claims two-and-a-half years before an election is the height of absurdity. The Green Party are as different from Labour as they are from Conservative.”
Labour deputy leader Councillor Warren Morgan said: “The Greens have shown no qualms about defeating Labour candidates and councillors, in some cases taking the seats themselves.”
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