Yes, a lot of people say that to me. But why?
Well, in 1980, my father saw a Labour PPB on the television, in which it was revealed that their commitment to Europe was no more. My father, previously a Labour member, went round and tore up his membership card. A few days before the broadcast, we had a visit from the local Liberals (while my father was out). After he came back from tearing his Labour Party card up, he went straight to their house (just round the corner) and joined. At the next local election, my father stood, but didn't win. In the next one, he was not allowed to stand (County Council employee), so my mother did, and came nowhere. However, he won in 1982 and served until 1990. He was later elected to serve a different area. My parents were also members of Hednesford Town Council, finally set up in 2000 after years of trying.
He stood in three General Elections. In 1987, he stood in Amber Valley (Derbyshire). In 1992, it was Aldridge-Brownhills. 2001 was the best yet, when he stood in Cannock. He didn't win any of them, but his performance in Cannock was better than the previous General Election.
As for me, my main involvement is that I am currently a member of the Liberal Democrats. Unfortunately, I am not in touch with my local party, and work often gets in the way, so I don't do much for them at the moment.
Have I ever met any politicians? Yes. Alex Carlile came to Cannock to give a talk, in about 1986. I met David Steel in Birmingham in about 1981. I was on television with Bill Rogers in 1992. I have also seen Paddy Ashdown several times. Also, I received my A-Level certificates from a now Labour MP, Tony Wright! Since then, I supported the Liberal Democrats at the Brent East by-election, meeting Lembit Öpik, Tom Brake and Andrew Stunnell, as well as Sarah Teather who was successful in that election. I was also around Simon Hughes on that day, but no words were exchanged between us.
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