The Liberal Democrat candidate for Wavertree, Colin Eldridge, has hit back at claims he is attacking his Labour party counterpart.
Eldridge, who is the bookies' favourite to
win Liverpool’s key election battleground,
says he’s not attacking Labour’s
controversial choice, Luciana Berger,
despite campaign leaflets (pictured
below) being less than complimentary about the Wembley-born candidate's lack of local knowledge.
He told JMU Journalism: “I totally disagree that we've been attacking her, the press have been doing that quite adequately.
“All I can say is that I've knocked on hundreds of doors over the last few weeks and it's the single issue that everyone is talking about on the doorsteps. I think for us not to talk about the issue that people are talking about would be totally silly.”
The Liberal Democrats have made some bold promises in their campaign manifesto, with a pledge to scrap university tuition fees and put more police on the streets.
Eldridge insists such promises can be kept: “Vince Cable,
our Treasury spokesman, is the most widely respected
economic guru in politics and this manifesto is his manifesto,
if you like.
“He's the person whose coming up with all the figures so
when we say we'll abolish tuition fees, when we say we'll
put extra police on the streets, he's the guy whose added it
all up and says it all works out.
“We'll ask people at the high end, the people who live in
million pound mansions, to pay a bit more and that's reality.”
Much of the coverage of the Wavertree election battle has
centred on whether or not former Royle Family star Ricky Tomlinson will stand as a Socialist Labour Party candidate after he criticised the selection of Labour’s Berger.
Eldridge does not wish to get drawn into the war of words but believes if Tomlinson did stand the electorate may not be so enamoured by his ideas.
He added: “I think the country's moved away from socialism. He (Tomlinson) is standing as a socialist and that's what people are being asked to vote for. It's not for me to say if he's going to be a politician or not. It's down to the electorate. If they vote for him then that's what they'll get.
“If he stands, there'll be plenty of opportunities to debate him to see what he's about. Obviously we don't know how seriously he's going to take the whole thing so we'll have to wait and see.”
The Conservative party’s Andrew Garnett and the English Democrats' Derek Grue are also standing in the Wavertree constituency in the General Election, the date of which has yet to be announced.
By Hugh O'Connell, General Election Correspondent
JMU Journalism Election 2010
Colin Eldridge at his campaign office in Wavertree; Labour's Luciana Berger; Ricky Tomlinson could run
The Lib Dems' Wavertree campaign leaflet
Extended interview with Colin Eldridge