On Thursday 12th December, people across the country are voting in what is bound to be the most definitive, impactful election seen in a long time.
For all of you who know me, you know I’ve fought for my home – Caerffili. 43 years of political fighting to be exact. From local council to the Welsh Assembly, I’ve been there, fighting for the underdog, fighting for my constituency.
This coming election though, I see this December as the largest opportunity my Party, Plaid Cymru, have had in 43 years to win Caerffili – this is the biggest fight yet, my biggest fight yet.
Like everyone, I am fed up of the shambles of Brexit, but I respect all views.
Having had a taste of unemployment early in my life though, I am extremely concerned about the possible effects of Brexit of Wales` trade with Europe.
The likely negative effects on ports, our already under pressure manufacturing industry, and the agricultural sector in Wales are enough to make anyone’s blood run cold.
Suppliers tell us they are stockpiling… that can`t be right surely? Why should we be worrying about our prescription drugs in the 21st century? Why should we be prepared to take such a risk.?
Let me be straight, I have no intention of seeing my community suffer just so the elite and ultra-rich can make a slight profit.
As the Liberal Democrats and Green Party are standing down candidates, that leaves Plaid Cymru as the sole Remain Party in Caerffili.
With the unholy alliance of the Conservatives and Brexit Party, and a fractured, stagnant Labour Party in Wales, Plaid have become the only party offering serious change for Wales – and a serious fight to stay in a reformed EU.
In forty-three years, this is the biggest opportunity I’ve seen in Caerffili for a Plaid MP. As the Party’s candidate in Caerffili, I’m going to grab that opportunity with both hands.
While Brexit is becoming the sole focus of this election though, let’s not forget the issues that caused it in the first place. People are disenfranchised with politics, and are sick of seeing their communities left to rot while rich elites stuff their pockets.
What concerns me is what has happened to all of the other important issues of the last three years? Who is speaking up for the Pensioners, the unemployed, people with disabilities and the homeless? What about the state of health in Caerffili? The purpose-built Gilfach Surgery is under threat of closure, and A and E services in Ystrad Fawr have been crippled by Labour’s cuts. Why should the elderly, the sick, and those in need have to wait hours for emergency care? It’s disgraceful and I will put an end to it.
What about those on low income who rely on foodbanks? All of this, and the Labour Party in Caerffili want to raise council tax by nearly 7%! After six years of their Chief Executive in Caerffili getting £137,000 a year for nothing, it’s a kick in the head for everyone in our community barely getting by. I have been unemployed myself, and have had a taste of what it’s like to struggle to pay the bills.
These are the issues that have fallen by the wayside, the issues that Careffili needs to worry about. We need change, we need to fight hard for our community.
As the MP for Caerffili, I’m not going to shy away from these problems– I’m going to bring them straight to Westminster’s door!
I’ve been in politics for over 43 years. Ask anyone who’s known me in that time, I’m not someone who backs away from a good challenge.
Being the Leader of the County Council for 8 years, as well as the Assembly Member for South Wales East for five, I have represented thousands of people over the years. From the Caerffili northern by-pass, the Clay Colliery fight, the campaign to save Bargoed Fire Station, the continuing fight against the threat to our green fields, as well as the Miner’s Strike, I fight for the underdog – and always will.
As a member of the Assembly, I was part of the successful fight for longer home carer visits to older people, better rights for foster children, free advocacy services for the vulnerable, old and sick, as well as the campaign to ban smoking in cars carrying children.
I don’t just sit about the office either. I get out, I talk to people, and I do what other politicians in Wales won’t. I’m proud to have been the only Welsh politician to have visited troops in Afghanistan.
We need a member of Parliament who will be sitting there for five years speaking up for this community – and all of its issues. I am not afraid of the establishment, and I never will be.
Whether we leave or remain, we still need to focus on the issues that affect our communities the most. I will be fighting for Caerffili and Wales, as I have done for the last forty-three years.
I am ready for this fight, nobody can question my commitment.
You know I won`t let you down.