Marcus's Column

Statement from Marcus Jones about the General Election

Over the past seven years I have said in this column, on a number of occasions, that we live in an extraordinary time in British political history.

On Tuesday last week the Prime Minister announced that, subject to a vote in the House of Commons, there would be a General Election on the 8th June. On Wednesday over 500 MPs, myself included, voted to trigger that Election.

I know from working in her Government that the Prime Minister does not make knee jerk, off the cuff, decisions. She will have thought long and hard before making her momentous decision. In my view, she has done the right thing.

When Theresa May became the Prime Minister, it was off the back of a General Election victory secured by David Cameron and following the subsequent referendum result in which the historic decision was made by the people to leave the EU.

Since becoming PM, Theresa May has set out a vision to deliver on Brexit and make it a success for our country. I supported her wholeheartedly in honouring the majority view of the British people. But at every turn she has faced the threat of being thwarted by Labour, Lib Dems and the SNP, who have been up to all sorts of game playing, particularly in the House of Lords.

Despite all that the PM succeeded in securing the vote on Article 50 to trigger our exit from the EU. The hard work has now started negotiating with the other EU countries. Those EU leaders know that without her own mandate and a very small majority the PM faces going into those negotiations with a weakened hand.

To make a success of Brexit requires the most significant set of negotiations that we have undertaken in decades. Therefore, in my view, Theresa May needs a clear personal mandate to give her that strong hand. Since she became Prime Minister Theresa May has also set out a clear vision to make this a country which works for everyone. I think she deserves the chance to follow that agenda through. I give her my full backing in seeking that mandate.

It has been an absolute honour to represent the people of Nuneaton, Arley and Hartshill since 2010. I fully intend asking the people of our area for their support once again on June 8th.

The next few weeks will see the Local Elections and then the General Election a few weeks later. No doubt they will be strongly contested elections but, above all, I hope it's a good clean fight where due respect is shown to all the candidates and their differing views. Let the results at the ballot box do the talking.