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5 years ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Norfolk North and Peni... · 1 reply · +1 points

I can understand how giving associations shortlists expedites the selection process but feel utterly disillusioned by how CCHQ has ridden roughshod over candidates, associations and volunteers this GE.

For example; Stoke South, who had a hard working and accomplished candidate at the last GE, were given a shortlist of one candidate, Jack Brereton. The association, who wanted to retain the same candidate, were given no explanation whatsoever. I have it on good authority that Karen Bradley MP had a hand in moving Jack from Central to the more winnable Stoke South, but Jack is young with little charisma and no experience outwith politics.

Similarly, Newcastle-under-Lyme were given a shortlist of two, one of whom was Owen Meredith. As a previous commenter pointed out, Owen left Newcastle Association in debt and on very bad terms with the rest of the members. His selection had, of course, been engineered by CCHQ. No explanation was given for the shortlist of two, despite the fact we knew many other, more suitable, people had applied for the seat.

Wirral West: another shortlist of two. Tony Cox was a dead cert for the seat, having previously been a councillor there, being local and having a fought a very hard campaign in NuL. Esther McVey decided to settle personal grievances with the association and turned up with her father and a number of other people who were unknown to the association, in order to engineer the selection of Caldeira, whose track record does not exactly inspire one with confidence.

Elsewhere we have Conservative Future devotees being selected in marginals such as Halifax and Dewsbury, presumably rewards from CCHQ for their campaign day attendance.

You'd think, after the Mark Clarke debacle, that CCHQ would have attempted to rid itself of the corruption which empowered Mark and at least attempted to appear fair and transparent.....