Libertas

Libertas is the most intriguing of the new political parties contesting the upcoming European elections. Its founder, Anglo-Irish business man, Declan Ganley led the successful NO vote for last year’s Irish referendum of the Lisbon Treaty, but unlike UKIP or No2EU, Libertas wants to reform the EU structure rather than disestablish and not participate in it. Its agenda is pan-European rather than restricted to being based solely in Britain, fielding as much as 500 candidates across the continent. Its policies include replacing the rule of governments appointing the European Commissioners with the election of Commissioners by either national parliamentary votes or by a nationwide election of the respective country. There are also calls on the European Parliament to decide European laws as opposed to the Commission and the Council. Rather than the controversial Lisbon treaty, which Libertas sees as the antithesis to the original European ideal of there being a ‘people’s Europe’, it proposes what it describes as a strong treaty which is discussed in the public arena and subsequently enforced by a mandatory, European-wide vote. While its critics such as the European Labour Party dismiss it as a pressure group masquerading as a political party, Libertas will have to stand the test of June 4th to prove its critics wrong.

CANDIDATES

Edward Francis Devoy
An unemployed, disabled former miner who currently works as a voluntary worker and political activist. He has fought for a ‘fairer and more equitable’ welfare system ‘free from red tape and unnecessary bureaucracy’. He is now taking his fight to the European level to restore to Europe what he sees as the lost dream of Jean Monet – with pledges for greater transparency and for a law making European parliament, as well as full access to MPs voting records.

Stephen Andrew Clark
A Leeds-born business analyst who currently works with the largest financial services provider in the UK and claims to have seen at first sight the turbulence of the credit crunch and what it can mean for Europe. Prior to that, he was a motor technician, who rose through the ranks to dealing with blue chip clients around the world. His political passions lie in forging a Europe, which has at its heart compassion for the elderly and increased protection for the environment. Stephen also wants to set an example to the ‘selfish, greedy and disrespectful MPs of today’.

Diana Macleod
The daughter of the late short-serving Conservative chancellor, Iain Macleod and a former UKIP election candidate is hoping to rekindle the Macleod name as a political force once again. With wide-ranging experience of occupations including running retail businesses and nursery school as well as a local district councillor, local and national charities and arable and livestock farmer, Diana’s special interests include health, education and support for the elderly and disabled. Her aforementioned background as a farmer gives her a special affection for the agricultural side of Britain too.

Trevor John Bending
An alumnus of our University of York, he studied Language and Education and an MA in English Language, teaching here in between 1974-79 and 1986-87 and subsequently qualifying as a teacher. Trevor went on afterwards to publish the first UK internet directory in 1997 and now lives semi-retired in Humberside where he sometimes manages a local sailing club’s website. His main area of political interest lies in the environment and education as well as the lack of transparency, which he believes the EU is espousing.