The Telegraph reports:
Mervyn Barrett has flooded Lincolnshire with expensive leaflets, free DVDs and full-page newspaper adverts in his bid to be elected as its policing supremo next month.
Unusually for a rural local election, he has employed professional campaign staff, commissioned weekly opinion polls, opened “field offices” and is driven in a chauffeured Mercedes.
He has poured tens of thousands of pounds into the elections, far more than any other candidate anywhere else in Britain.
Mr Barrett describes himself as an “independent”, opposed to “party politics” in policing. He has refused to disclose who is funding him, despite widespread local suspicions generated by the intensity and professionalism of his campaign.
However, it can now be revealed that it has been run by a team from a US-based neo-conservative think tank, the Fund for the New American Century, funded in part by a variety of corporate donors with an interest in public-sector privatisation.
The BBC adds:
The campaign team supporting one of Lincolnshire’s police and crime commissioner candidates has resigned….
Mr Barrett backs Lincolnshire Police’s partnership with G4S, under which two-thirds of civilian staff transferred to the private security firm in April this year.
In a statement on his website, he said he now wished to “consider how best I could continue my campaign” following the resignations.
He said: “I am not for sale, I never have been for sale and I never will be for sale.”…
At the point Mr Barrett’s campaign team resigned there were two full-time members of staff based predominantly in Lincolnshire and four or five others who travelled between London and Lincolnshire.