Monday, February 28, 2011

Green London Mayoral Hustings: Jenny Jones

London Green Party is selecting who is to be our Mayoral candidate in 2012. There are three candidates for the job Shahrar Ali, Farid Bakht and Jenny Jones who all very kindly agreed to answer some of my questions. Here is what Jenny has to say.

If you had to choose one campaigning priority for the Green Party Mayoral campaign, what would it be?

It's a tough choice between Climate Change issues and Inequality issues, but if I had to choose it would be Climate Change. Greens are usually the only party to make the link between environmental and social justice, so that's our unique political selling point.

We can promote polices that cover both areas, such as home insulation (lowers carbon emissions and fuel bills for low paid), or air pollution (cut carbon emissions from polluting vehicles and improve health for poorer Londoners who can't avoid the fumes).

How do you see the role of the Mayoral candidate in relation to the Assembly campaign?

The Mayoral candidate has to promote the Assembly list at every opportunity. A Green Mayor is a very long shot, whereas two or three AM's are quite likely, and they will be able to make real change.

How should we politically approach Ken Livingstone bid to become Mayor again?

Very very carefully. In my view, our Tory Mayor has plunged us backwards, socially and environmentally, so the Ken era is starting to look like golden times. However, we have to examine both manifestos and play a little hard to get - the Labour Party isn't any more trustworthy than the Tories.

Although I have worked fairly well with Ken, I've never let him off the hook when I think he's wrong, for example on the Thames Gateway Bridge, and he knows that.

What is the most fun part of campaigning for you?

When all the big decisions are made (strategy, manifesto, leaflets, broadcast) and there's just teams of Greens leafletting, doorknocking and drinking in the pub afterwards.

What would be your top tip to someone who is just starting to get active in the Green Party?

Work with your local party and get active on the leafletting, the stalls, etc. Avoid London Fed (too mindnumbing), but go to Party conference at least once, and accept that politics is very hard work, but what option is there?


noel said...

No mention whatsoever of fighting the cuts!

But I guess that isn't much of a political issue at the moment is it.

onlooker said...

Bitchy, bitchy!

Sarah Cope said...

Noel, Jenny mentioned 'inequality issues', and that includes the cuts, since the cuts are hitting the poorest the hardest.

You really will have to learn to be a team player if you want to be an Assembly Member.

noel said...

I think you've got me confused with Noel Lynch I am not standing for the London assembly.

Mentioning inequality issues is not enough, I am sure both Boris Johnson and David Cameron would say they are committed to reducing inequality. Our mayoral candidates should be making it explicitly clear that they are anticuts candidates and will do everything in their power to fight the cuts. I would be very happy to be a player on that team.

Vote Green in the Assembly! said...

lol :-)
I'm part of the generation who stands to be effected most in the future by the devastating impacts of the cuts, just as with climate change. We're facing a pensions time-bomb, PFI chaos, and I count myself as one of almost 1 million 26-24 year old graduates who are unemployed. In the anti-cuts movement, that is not a weakness, that is only going to make my position clearer.

Anonymous said...

Sarah Cope, your comment is much more revealing than you intended.

Anonymous said...

Cote Green in the Assembly. You're wrong - it's not the cuts that will affect you, but the world economic crisis and our own Government's response (both before and after coalition). The anti-cuts movement is deluded. We can continue to borrow more and more and more, and pay more and more and more interest. Eventually interest rates will rise, people will lose their homes and businesses will collapse. The Government will be forced to go cap in hand to the IMF/EU to be bailed out. The conditions for that would be far harsher and indiscriminate cuts than we face now. Ireland is cutting the minimum wage. The UK is restoring the pensions link and cutting tax for the lowest paid. Universal credit will see some winners and losers. The losers will be those families earning £50-60K who can claim tax credits. I can live with that.