When will they learn? Labour savaged over ‘ridiculous’ Remainer Hartlepool candidate

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Mr Bull, who has experience of running for Parliament in the north-east, having stood in Sedgefield, former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s former constituency, in 2019, suggested Labour was guilty of taking its voters for granted. And in a swipe at current leader Sir Keir Starmer, he suggested the party was “now rudderless” – while comparing the former Director of Public Prosecutions to a “sloth”.

Mr Bull, the deputy leader of the Reform Party, has his own election battle as he fights to win a seat on the London Assembly.

Dr Paul Williams, who campaigned for Remain in the 2016 referendum and remained opposed to Brexit subsequently, will contest Hartlepool on May 6, two years after losing his seat in Stockton North, a few miles to the South.

His views are wildly out of step in a constituency that voted Leave by 69.6 percent to 30.4 percent in 2016.

It is absolutely ridiculous

David Bull

Mr Bull told Express.co.uk: “It shows yet again these centralised political parties thinking they know better than the people they are trying to represent.

“It is absolutely ridiculous – the transition from the Brexit party has been complicated but the way we see this is Brexit was very much the beginning of the journey.

“And against all the odds as people voted to leave and we were told you cannot make this happen, and against the odds, we made it happen.

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“Now you’ve still got Westminster telling the electorate, where you can’t do this, you can’t do that.

“Things are starting to change because all people see is the same old mantra the same political parties, banging on with the same old, I know better than you.”

Mr Bull stressed: “A lot of this is about common sense thinking.

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“If you wouldn’t pay for something out of your own money, why would you commit public money to it, and I just don’t think that many of these councils have thought that through.

“Labour is totally out of step and also they took it for granted, I think.

“There was very much a feeling that this is our patch, what are you doing here.

“I worked incredibly hard up in Sedgefield, as we did in Hartlepool l and there was a real sense of optimism and of change.”

Turning his attention to Mr Starmer, Mr Bull said: “Labour has just got a rudderless leader.

“They asked people to come up with the animals that most resembled party leaders and for him, they came up with a sloth.

“He is not setting a different agenda as far as I can see.

“I feel very much that we are fighting the incumbent parties, rather than there being clear blue water between them.”

The by-election has been triggered by the resignation of former Labour MP Mike Hill, who is facing an employment tribunal later this year relating to allegations of sexual harassment and victimisation, claims he strenuously denies.

An opinion poll commissioned by the Communication Workers Union (CWU) gave Tory candidate Jill Mortimer a seven-point leader at the start of this month.

Current Reform Party leader Richard Tice took more than 10,000 votes in the constituency in the 2019 general election, with Mr Hill triumphing despite taking 37 percent of the vote.

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