Responding to reports in today’s Scottish Daily Mirror that Tony Blair will be paying East Dunbartonshire a panic, last minute visit, local Liberal Democrat candidate Jo Swinson said that the visit will only remind local constituents about 8 years of being let down by New Labour.
Jo Swinson said, “This panic visit suggests the wheels are starting to come off the New Labour campaign in East Dunbartonshire, but it won’t impress local people.
If Tony Blair were to knock on a few doors in the constituency this evening or tomorrow he’d find that people are tired of his spin and broken promises. Local people have lost trust in Tony Blair.
“John Lyons likes to talk tough, but will he use this opportunity to criticise Tony Blair publicly for spending his time fighting George Bush’s illegal war in Iraq when he should have been concentrating on domestic issues? If not, then he can only blame himself if he is seen to be a New Labour poodle.”
“By contrast, the Liberal Democrats in East Dunbartonshire have been campaigning to save local Post Offices, scrap the Council Tax and increase pensions. People know they can trust Charles Kennedy and the Liberal Democrats because we have already delivered on our manifesto commitments – for example to introduce free personal care for the elderly and scrap tuition fees.”
Under the new boundary changes, the Liberal Democrats need just 2,601 votes to wrest the seat from New Labour. According to a recent Scotland on Sunday poll, the Lib Dems could win the seat with a comfortable majority. East Dunbartonshire appeared on a secret list of seats Labour are fearful of losing obtained by the London Evening Standard last week. Past experience from 2001 shows that Tony Blair only visits constituencies where Labour are worried they will lose.