Independent candidate for Mid Beds sets up Go Fund Me to help fight by-election 'on equal terms'

Now Nadine Dorries has resigned, the Independent by-election candidate's campaign is "fully live"
CBC''s Independent Flitwick councillor Gareth Mackey will be standing in the next general election. Image supplied by G. MackeyCBC''s Independent Flitwick councillor Gareth Mackey will be standing in the next general election. Image supplied by G. Mackey
CBC''s Independent Flitwick councillor Gareth Mackey will be standing in the next general election. Image supplied by G. Mackey

Now that the former Mid Bedfordshire MP has resigned, the Independent by-election candidate’s campaign is now “fully live”.

Gareth Mackey said: “I didn’t have the kind of resources that all the parties have, so I’ve got to be quite traditious and very, very careful with any money that I do have”

This has led Mackey to set up a Go Fund Me page to help him fight the by-election on “equal terms with the major and fringe parties”.

And now Nadine Dorries has officially resigned he said he can get all those leaflets done, knocking on doors, and “getting on to the streets a bit more”.

“But I think it’s a change of mindset now more than anything, so the button has been pushed and we all go for it,” he said.

As Mackey hasn’t been as ‘full on’ as other candidates so far, what support has he had so far?

“I’m seeing an awful lot of support in the things that I read, the people writing about me in articles,” he said. “I see people are saying that there’s this local candidate that may very well come through and win.

“I’m not doing anything different than I’ve done my whole political career, I’m just trying to be as authentic as I can be and just represent people’s views.

“And that chimes with them because they’re sick and tired of the old political way of doing things, and the insincerity and the cynicism. They just want someone who’s going to be there just to look after their interests,.”

There’s no manifesto, Mackey’s views aren’t all out there in black and white. But he isn’t worried that he’ll be seen as someone who sits on the fence on issues.

“Manifestos are for governments and how they want to change the country,” he said. “I have no less lofty an ambition that I want to change people’s lives. But to me it’s about listening and about reacting to what the people need, so I’m a pretty middle of the road person.

“Of course, as the election goes on I’m going to put more of what I think on paper for people so they can make their mind up.

“People forget that a large part of what a constituency MP should do happens over the phone, in people’s front rooms, sorting out their problems for them, to be present. Just doing things that matter on an everyday level.

“Yes, voting in the house is important but there are so many things that sort of cross all political parties that are important to people. Things like keeping local station ticket offices open, getting the police funded better, getting the NHS funded better. These are these cross party things and those are things that are important to the people of Mid Bedfordshire, so they’re important to me.”

As some candidates are making being local an election issue, will Mackey be voting for himself?

“Absolutely, I mean why wouldn’t you vote for real change that everybody wants? And I’ve got to have the courage of my convictions, don’t I?” he added