Isobel Grant: Twickenham’s Conservative candidate aspires for party change

By Anetha Sivananthan
December 13 2019, 09.20

Defeated Conservative Twickenham candidate Isobel Grant believes the Tories will be a different party now they have a majority in parliament. 

Ms Grant was defeated after Liberal Democrat’s Munira Wilson won the seat with 36,166 votes – a sharp increase from the 34,969 votes secured by the Liberal Democrats’ former leader Sir Vince Cable in the June 2017 election. 

The Conservative party’s manifesto pledged to get Brexit done by January, extra funding for the NHS, 20,000 more police officers, an Australian style points-based system for immigration control and investment into science, schools and apprenticeships.

Ms Grant said: “It’s an incredible privilege to be here and have your name on the sheet.”

In response to Conservatives winning traditional Labour seats, she said: “If we’re shifting the heartland further north, it will have different priorities, which I find quite interesting. It will be a different party and a different government.” 

Funding cuts to state schools, the proposed Heathrow expansion and Twickenham’s remain majority in the 2016 EU referendum are potential factors for why votes fell short for the Conservatives. 

The decrease in the voting turnout from 78.95% in the 2017 General Election to 76.25% may have played another part in the decline in votes. 

The party also emphasised alleviating the climate crisis by pledging to reach Net Zero by 2050 through investments in clean energy solutions and green infrastructure to reduce carbon emissions, however, the Labour party and the Liberal Democrats made the same pledge with earlier deadlines set to 2030 and 2045.

Newly elected Ms Wilson said: “I would also like to pay tribute to my predecessor, Vince Cable, who for the last 20 years has been an outstanding MP for our area and been a towering figure nationally.”

She added that she looked forward to building on Mr Cable’s legacy. 

Vince Cable was MP for Twickenham and leader of the Liberal Democrats until he announced he would be standing down from both positions earlier this year. 

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