Saturday, October 11, 2008

European Parliament visit

I spent two days this week on a candidates' visit to the European Parliament in Brussels.

It was a chance to talk to colleagues about their developing campaigns, as well as meet key people in the European Socialist Group, as well as our own Labour MEPs.

Stephen Hughes is our hard-working Labour MEP here in the North East, and he's standing once again with Fay Tinnion and myself. After narrowly missing out last time, when Mo O'Toole lost, there's every chance we can recapture that second seat back again from either the LibDems or the Tories. As someone who was on the Party's list, but not a candidate last time (it's a long story), it's clear that we are far better prepared for this campaign than 5 years ago. Together with Stephen and Fay I've tweaked the national campaign to maximise resources here in the North East, and had a very good reception from a number of party members who are raring to go.

We have a positive message across a range of key issues, from the economy to climate change, energy security and combatting terrorism. It's in marked contrast to the disarray amongst the Tories, and the embarrassing spectacle that is UKIP in the European Parliament.

Whilst we spent most of the two days holed up in meetings, we also saw the Parlaiment in action, albeit first thing in the morning when there were few there. It started to fill up later on as the first vote was taken...


Anonymous said...

Alan Macnab writes....

I hate to rain on your parade Nick, but the EC has not come out too well in the present economic crisis and it has been noted by the people.

Its inability to anticipate the economic problems, to speak with one united voice and to come up with workable solutions has been noted. The EC and the European Parliament has been bypassed by the G8 leaders and individual countries going their own way. This begs the question if it cannot lead on such important issues and come up with workable, effective, enforceable solutions what is the point of the EC? At the moment the jury is out.

I am a fervent, committed Europhile, but the response to the current crisis by the EC has been ineffective, irrelevant and very dissapointing.

The EC will have to be reformed. There is no doubt whatsoever. The paying public or the shareholders in it will demand that it gives value for money and it makes plans in the good times to respond quickly, effectively and with a united voice in the bad times such as we are experiencing at the moment and for many years to come.

Anonymous said...

Alan Macnab writes....

Sorry G8 should be G7 I think and a spelling mistake. Disappointing is the correct spelling of the word.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't write UKIP off as embarrasing. I think that at such a time of low morale amongst Labour voters UKIP will mop up a lot of votes and cost Labour several seats at next years Euro Elections.
Beware your words might come back to bite you on the bum!
UKIP are the party of the future.

ex labour said...

How many went

Who paid for it


How much did it cost in total?