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The Cambridge vote race

More and more Black wannabe Conservative politicians are putting themselves forward as news reaches us of two more hopefuls going for the same seat.

Sarah El-Neil and Chamali Fernando are both aiming to be the Tory candidate in Cambridge, a Lib Dem-held seat, which Nick Clegg’s party are likely to hold onto.

David Cameron’s party are in third place, but with the Labour vote suffering they could conceivably move up to second at the general election, so the Cambridge contest could well be a valuable stepping stone for whoever wears the blue rosette next May.

El-Neil (pictured on the right) is chairwoman of the Cambridge Conservative Association, while barrister Fernando defected from the Lib Dems earlier this year.

The Lib Dems in Cambridge have not yet picked their shortlist to replace the high-respected retiring MP David Howarth, but it seems like an ideal opportunity for a Black MP to join what is currently an all-white Commons team.

The Lib Dems often say that, unlike the other parties, they don’t have any “safe seats”, but surely Cambridge is as close as they get to one?

Of the six aspiring politicians on the Tory shortlist, four are women and two are Black, so it will be interesting to see how the Lib Dem’s shortlist compares.

As we’ve been doing with other selections, we’ll keep you posted.

By Lester Holloway

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3 Responses

  1. You omit to mention that one of the white male candidates has been blind since birth. Or, indeed, that the remaining white, male, apparently fully able candidate is probably the best qualified of them all to be an MP.

  2. I agree wholeheartedly with Lester Holloway. Cambridge presents a real opporrunity to almost gaurantee itself a Black or Asian MP amongst its Parliamentary Group

    The decison howver rests with the local party as Liberal Democrats do not impose candidates on constituency
    Will the Cambridge Liberal Democrats local Party be bold enough to rise to the challenge of selecting a Black or Asian candidate? I most sincerely wish they would but have to admit do not hold out much hope

  3. Oneman, while I have no idea whether the white male fully-able candidate is the best person for the job, I would remind you that many Black political party members who have been around a bit have heard a million times that the best candidate won, who just happens to be a white male.

    No doubt some of the time that is true, but when it happens again and again, sometimes we ask whether this is always true. And we watch the MPs who have been elected, and wonder further. And we look at the talented Black people who didn’t make it, and wonder even more.

    You may well be true that the best candidate in Cambridge in the white male, but in a way you’re missing the bigger picture. Contrary to the outcome of selection processes in past years, the best candidate is not ALWAYS the white man.

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