LibDems ready to 'throw the kitchen sink' at Mid Bedfordshire by-election

LibDems say it will be a ‘two horse race’ between them and the Conservatives
Liberal Democrat deputy leader and health spokesperson, Daisy Cooper, in AmpthillLiberal Democrat deputy leader and health spokesperson, Daisy Cooper, in Ampthill
Liberal Democrat deputy leader and health spokesperson, Daisy Cooper, in Ampthill

The Liberal Democrats are throwing the “kitchen sink” at Mid Bedfordshire and will be ready whenever Nadine Dorries officially resigns, the party’s deputy leader has said.

Last week, Ms Dorries, the former culture secretary, said she was standing down “with immediate effect”, but has yet to officially resign so she can be ‘appointed the bailiff of Northstead Manor’.

Yesterday (Thursday, June 15), while campaigning in Ampthill, the Liberal Democrat deputy leader and health spokesperson, Daisy Cooper, said: “I honestly don’t know when the by-election is going to be, that’s largely in the hands of the outgoing MP herself.

“What I can tell you is that we’ve hit the ground running, our party leader Ed Davey, has been [in Mid Beds] twice already in just the last few days.

“We’ve got activists out every single day knocking on doors, so whenever that by-election comes, whether it’s this side of the summer or whether it’s in the autumn, the Liberal Democrats will be ready and will be fighting to win,” she said.

The LibDems are claiming that this is a two-horse race between them and the Conservatives.

“This is a classic rural seat in the blue wall, the blue wall being the area we describe where Liberal Democrats are the key challengers to the Conservatives,” Ms Cooper explained.

“We had a very strong second place in this constituency in 2005 and in 2010 and we’ve been making gains at the local council level as well.

“It’s clear to all to see, including the bookies, that we are now favourites to win this by-election.”

Before last month’s local elections for council wards within the constituency, there was one LibDem councillor. Following the election, there was still only one LibDem councillor. Ms Cooper was asked how that shows that her party will be a contender in this area.

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“As I say, we’ve got the bookies saying that we are odds on to win, we’re the favourites to win this constituency,” she said.

“It is a two horse race between the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives, we’ve had very strong second places in the past, as I’ve said, and that’s why Liberal Democrats will be throwing the kitchen sink at this seat.

“If you look at recent by-elections, the Liberal Democrats have won in Chesham and Amersham, which is not too far from here,” Ms Cooper replied.

“We also won in North Shropshire and also in East Devon, we have been winning in these rural seats in blue wall areas right across the country.

“And it’s clear to us that Mid Bedfordshire is a very similar kind of seat, so we will be taking the fight to the Tories, we do believe it’s a two horse race,

“We will be throwing the kitchen sink at it, and we are determined to do our very, very, best to try and win over the support and the votes of people right here,” she said.