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Parties Choose York Outer Candidates for General Election


8:00am 4th May 2014

The three main parties have chosen their candidates to fight the York Outer seat in next year's general election.

Sitting Conservative MP Julian Sturdy will stand for a second term, he'll be challenged by James Blanchard for the Liberal Democrats and Joe Riches for Labour.

Joe Riches was selected by the Labour party as it's candidate this week. It means he will stand down from his role as a councillor on York Council. He said:

"It is an honour to be elected Labour's candidate for York Outer at the next general election and I look forward to getting on the streets and talking to people.

"Labour is serious about York Outer and the party is targeting this seat. Me standing down as a councillor to challenge Julian Sturdy shows how serious we are. 

"Whilst voting Liberal Democrat gets you a Tory Government anyway, it is clear the choice in York Outer is between a Conservative who fights against jobs and homes and supports the bedroom tax or a Labour MP who stands for jobs, homes and fairness.  

"The Liberal Democrats realise they can't win York Outer and this is presumably why their candidate resigned without explanation and couldn’t find a local candidate. Labour is the real challenge to the Tories in York Outer."

But Conservative Julian Sturdy says he's looking forward to debating the issues with his opponents:

"As we move closer to the general election, I welcome the opportunity to debate the issues that matter to the people of York Outer; from the improving economic situation, which has seen the number of people out of work in the constituency drop to an all time low, to the improvement of our healthcare services across the city, and the fight to preserve our Greenbelt."

"On the issue of York’s Greenbelt, I look forward to Cllr Riches explaining to the residents of York Outer why he supports Labour’s Local Plan. It will, after all, see over 2000 acres of Greenbelt land concreted over, with development drastically out-pacing investment in local infrastructure. If forced through, Labour’s Local Plan will ultimately change the character and setting of our cathedral city and its surrounding rural communities out of all recognition.’"

Liberal Democrat candidate James Blanchard gave his reaction to Minster FM saying:

"Myself and the York Liberal Democrats team are serious about campaigning for the best for the people of York. 

"The Liberal Democrats in government have cut income tax bills for the lowest paid by £700, relinked the basic state pension to earnings - increasing it by more than 15 pounds a week - and are bringing in free school meals for all infants.  Local people know that the Conservatives wouldn't have done these on their own, but also remember that Labour did none of these in their thirteen years in power when they had the opportunity.

"Meanwhile, it is clear residents are unhappy with the Labour-run council wasting time and money on vanity projects in central York at the expense of basic services in York Outer.

"Labour came a poor third in York Outer last time and can't win here."

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