Conservative councillor in Elmbridge switches to the Lib Dems

Having spent 11 years working for the Conservatives, Walton South councillor Christine Elmer, joined the Liberal Democrats party yesterday. She announced her departure on Twitter:

Against the Conservative Brexit, Christine Elmer said:

I have been unhappy for some time with the political direction of the Conservative party. In recent days this situation had escalated by a series of events, including the announcement by the Prime Minister of a general election about the handling of the terms of the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union.

As a fervent Remainer I find I can no longer support the government’s line on this, nor that of the current MP Dominic Raab. I now find it impossible to be a member of the Conservative party and have therefore decided to join the Liberal Democrat party.

I have served Walton South ward since 2006. In 2014 for the first time in 40 years of Elmbridge Council electoral history I was returned unopposed and in 2016 I received the highest number of votes in the all-out elections called for the ward. I therefore believe I have a personal mandate to continue in office. It is not my intention to cause a by-election.

I will do my best to continue to represent my constituents of Walton South and to look after their interests regardless of political interest. I feel I will be better able to do that as a member of a political party that I can support 100% both at a national level and locally. That party is the Liberal Democrat party.

Richard Waller, Chairman of the Elmbridge Liberal Democrats extended her a warm welcome:

The Elmbridge Liberal Democrats are delighted to welcome Christine Elmer to the party. She is recognised as being a highly competent Elmbridge councillor and in addition will reinforce our voice opposing a hard Brexit nationally.

Andrew Davis, Liberal Democrat candidate for Esher & Walton in the General Election sees this as part of a growing trend:

In Esher and Walton, we are seeing more and more people choosing to support the Liberal Democrats. Christine Elmer is one of many. Support for the Liberal Democrats is growing locally and nationally. The Conservatives lost their majority here in the 2016 borough council elections. And in the last six days, since the snap election was called, we’ve had 12,500 new members join the party.
Elmbridge is pro-Europe and 60% of us here voted Remain. Yet Dominic Raab, the local Conservative MP, is pushing for a hard Brexit. The majority here don’t want a hard Brexit. People here are making their voices heard and choosing Liberal Democrats for Esher and Walton.

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist. He is one of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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One Comment

  • Lorenzo Cherin 25th Apr '17 - 11:12pm

    This is very good, thanks Paul.

    Have just read about Christine, a fine councillor by the articles I read, and elected unopposed due to her track record.

    Welcome , Christine !!

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