General Election 8 June 2017

About our Wealden constituency candidate Chris Bowers

The Liberal Democrat ManifestoCan you help us?

About our Wealden constituency candidate Chris Bowers

Your Lib Dem candidate is local, a member of the community, and not a career politician.

Chris is a writer and broadcaster, known to tennis fans as a commentator and biographer of tennis stars Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.

He has promoted cross-party cooperation, notably in a book which he co-edited with the Green MP Caroline Lucas and the Labour MP Lisa Nandy.

He has been a councillor, trade union official and an environmental campaigner, and is currently chair of a charitable trust fund.

He has lived between Uckfield and Lewes for the past 19 years, and his daughter attends the local state secondary school.

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Download Chris’s Election Address

The Liberal Democrat Manifesto

Read our manifesto online – broken down by topic so you can focus on the areas of most interest to you.

From that page you can also download the manifesto in pdf format.

LibDem Candidate for Wealden Chris Bowers says:

On Education

You’ll never get rid of the differences between rich and poor, and as long as that reflects the fact that some people like to work hard and earn lots of money while others are happy earning just enough to live on, that’s fine.

But what’s vital is to guarantee every child and adult the same opportunity, so they can make of life what they want of it. That’s why education is so important, and why the Conservatives’ cuts to our schools will create such damage for years to come.

The Tories are also fixated on the idea of selective education, mainly because they only see the success stories of the youngsters who go to grammar schools, whereas we look at everyone – and selective education posts worse academic results and does nothing for social mobility.

We Lib Dems have pledged to spend £7 billion on schools, so every child has a fair chance in life.

On the NHS

How many times do we have to hear the NHS is in crisis before we realise it’s not safe in the Conservatives’ hands?

Scarcely a week goes by without some story of how the NHS is being starved of money comes to light, and now we hear that the chairman of the British Medical Association’s GP committee is warning that general practice is on the ‘brink of collapse’.

Another five years of Conservative landslide government and who knows whether we’ll have an NHS at all!

That’s why the Liberal Democrats have said we will raise income tax by one penny in the pound to fund £6 billion of NHS spending. We care, even if Theresa May doesn’t.

On the EU

There are some who are choosing to see our commitment to a referendum on the final Brexit deal as voting overload, but our policy is one of pure common sense.

Britain voted to leave the EU, but we voted blind because there was absolutely no plan for how we would leave. Therefore, it’s quite right that the Brexit negotiations should continue, but there must be a vote at the end of it, otherwise the government could get an awful deal, say it’s the best it could negotiate, and we’d be lumbered with it.

Given the enormity of what Britain leaving the European Union means, we have to have the safeguard that the deal must be approved by the people, and if the deal is worse than remaining a member, then we need to be sensible and change direction.

On Financial credibility

It’s easy for political parties to say they’ll spend this much on this and that much on that, and it’s very difficult for most people to know whether the numbers stack up.

That’s why we have shown our manifesto to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and they have confirmed that our sums do add up. The IFS is not saying it necessarily agrees with what we propose, but it is saying that in financial terms it’s a credible programme for government.

The IFS also says that, as 45% of the population don’t pay income tax because their income is so low, our revenue-raising proposal of 1p on income tax means those with the broadest shoulders will shoulder more of the burden.

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