With only a couple of weeks to go before the General Election I have decided that I am going to write a profile on each candidate. I won’t be giving opinions and will do my utmost to present a balanced account of each candidate.
I have decided to start with Labour’s Huw Thomas, for no reason in particular.
Born and raised in the Aberystwyth area, Huw Thomas went to Penweddig School before studying Music in Oxford and International Politics in Aberystwyth. According to the Labour Party website, “Huw enjoys hill walking and cycling, and loves listening and performing music of all sorts.”
Though originally from Ceredigion, Mr Thomas has lived in Cardiff for many years. Since 2012 he has represented the Splott and Tremorfa ward on Cardiff Council. The area, which is in a Labour safe seat in both the National Assembly and Westminster, suffers from high levels of poverty and has been in the news for the shocking story that children in Tremorfa were still being diagnosed with Rickets, an awful situation for 21st century Wales of course.
Mr Thomas has confirmed that if elected he will resign his place on Cardiff Council. He has recently fended off criticisms and demands for his resignation from Cardiff Council by his constituents because of the fact that he has been spending time campaigning here in Ceredigion. He said to WalesOnline: “Yes I’m a general election candidate but that’s neither here nor there. I am spending lots of time in Cardiff.”
He also told the Tivyside Advertiser, “It is a fantastic honour to stand for Labour in the area I was born and brought up. My family has lived here for generations, and growing up in a close-knit community in Ceredigion has shaped me as a person and remains a fundamental part of my identity.”
The last Labour MP in Ceredigion was elected in 1966 and since losing the seat they have struggled to gain any significant support in the area. In the last election in 2010 they came a disappointing fourth, scraping a mere 5.8% of the vote.
The most recent news of note about Huw Thomas has come through this disappointing week of election journalism. After demanding that Mike Parker resign for comments he never made, Mr Thomas was found to have previously advocated the vandalism of cars belonging to English people in Wales and called for incomers from England to be forced to pay additional income tax if they fail to learn Welsh within a year of their arrival. As bad as this may sound however, it must be remembered that Mr Thomas was still in school when he made this comments and it would be wrong to judge him now based on comments from years ago. The only problem with Mr Thomas regarding this news is that he had called for Mr Parker’s resignation to later be found to have made worse comments himself.
I dread to mention the “scandal” but it was necessary. It is of course far more important to base our decision on policy than what someone said when they were in school.
I’m not going to delve into the parties’ policies as I’m sure the parties themselves would do a much better job of it than I would. Therefore if you are a braver person than I am and you have a significant amount of time on your hand then feel free to read the Labour Party manifesto which can be found through the link at the bottom of the page.
Their main “pledges” as they’re calling them however are as follows:
- Getting rid of the deficit – To do this they have promised to continue with the spending cuts which have come under this government while also raising some taxes such as the “mansion tax”
- Raising living standards for “working families”
- “An NHS with time to care” – Of course the Welsh NHS is already run by Welsh Labour, I’ll let you be the judge of how that’s going
- Controls on Immigration
- “A country where the next generation can do better than the last”
p.s. The photo I chose was not meant as a sleight to Ed Miliband, just type his name into google images and you’ll see why I struggled to find a better one…