Conservative Party (UK) parliamentary primaries

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Since 2009, the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom has experimented with the use of open primaries to select some parliamentary candidates.[1]

Three primaries were held ahead of the 2010 general election in Oxford West & Abingdon, Totnes and Gosport. So far at least 12 primaries have been held ahead of the 2015 general election.

For the 2010 general election[edit]

Michael Ellis was selected for Northampton North in 2006.

Totnes[edit]

Totnes

Totnes was the first constituency to use an open primary to select the Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate. The election was held in August 2009 and saw a turnout of approximately 25%. Due to the success of this primary election, David Cameron announced that the system would be applied to other constituencies in future.[2] Dr Sarah Wollaston, a general practitioner, was selected with 48% of the vote.[3] Wollaston went on to be elected MP for Totnes at the 2010 general election.

Gosport[edit]

Gosport

Gosport held an open primary to select a candidate to succeed Peter Viggers upon his retirement from Westminster.[4][5] The election was held in December 2009. Caroline Dinenage, a local business owner and daughter of Fred Dinenage, was selected with 38% of the vote. Dinenage was elected MP for Gosport at the 2010 general election, with an increased majority.

Clacton by-election, 2014[edit]

The 2014 Clacton by-election, caused by the defection from the Conservatives of Douglas Carswell, a prominent advocate of open primaries, selected actor Giles Watling over Colchester councillor Sue Lissimore on 11 September.[6][7]

Rochester and Strood by-election, 2014[edit]

The candidate for the 2014 Rochester and Strood by-election, caused by the defection from the Conservative Party of Mark Reckless to the UK Independence Party (UKIP), was chosen by a postal open primary.[8] Kelly Tolhurst, a local councillor, narrowly won over fellow councillor Anna Firth. Tolhurst lost the by-election to Reckless, but later won the seat at the following year's general election.

For the 2015 general election[edit]

Constituency Main article Date of final selection Candidate chosen Conservative seat before 2015 election Candidate elected in 2015?
Berwick-upon-Tweed[9] Feb 2013 Anne-Marie Trevelyan No Yes
Boston and Skegness[10] 25 Oct 2014 Matt Warman Yes Yes
Croydon South[11] 12 Nov 2013 Chris Philp Yes Yes
Hampstead and Kilburn Hampstead and Kilburn Conservative primary, 2013 30 January 2013 Simon Marcus No No
Louth and Horncastle[12] 28 July 2014 Victoria Atkin Yes Yes
Mid Worcestershire[13] 22 November 2013 Nigel Huddleston Yes Yes
North East Hampshire[14] 17 November 2013 Ranil Jayawardena Yes Yes
South East Cambridgeshire[15] 7 December 2013 Lucy Frazer QC[16] Yes Yes
Tonbridge and Malling[17] 2 November 2013 Colonel Tom Tugendhat Yes Yes
Twickenham[18] 5 September 2013 Dr Tania Mathias No Yes
Wealden[19] 5 December 2013 Nusrat Ghani Yes Yes
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine[20] 10 March 2014 Alexander Burnett No No
Yeovil[21] July 2013 Marcus Fysh No Yes

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hannan, Daniel (2013-10-19). "Open primaries are spreading unremarked across local Conservative Associations – Telegraph Blogs". Blogs.telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  2. ^ "David Cameron reiterates Tory opposition to Tony Blair becoming EU President". ConservativeHome. October 27, 2009. 
  3. ^ "Tory backbencher Anthony Steen to stand down following expenses revelations". The Guardian. May 20, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Gosport voters to get open primary on replacing Peter Viggers". The Daily Telegraph. October 29, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Dinenage to succeed duck house MP as Tory candidate". BBC News. December 4, 2009. 
  6. ^ "TORY 'open primary' candidates for Clacton by-election are Frinton actor Giles Watling and Colchester councillor Sue Lissimore". Clacton and Frinton Gazette. 
  7. ^ "Two candidates shortlisted for the Clacton by-election". Conservative Home. 
  8. ^ By-election update: All voters to get chance to have a say in choosing Tory successor to Mark Reckless in Rochester and Strood KentOnLine
  9. ^ "Tories adopt Trevelyan at open primary". Berwick Advertiser. 2013-02-14. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  10. ^ Boston Standard, http://www.bostonstandard.co.uk/news/local/details-revealed-of-boston-and-skegness-conservative-party-s-open-primary-1-6340009
  11. ^ "Croydon South candidates are put through their doorstep paces with a canvassing test". Conservative Home. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  12. ^ Louth Leader, http://www.louthleader.co.uk/news/local/breaking-victoria-atkin-selected-as-conservative-party-primary-candidate-to-succeed-sir-peter-tapsell-1-6205028
  13. ^ "Mwca Parliamentary Candidate Selection | Mid Worcestershire". Midworcestershireconservatives.org.uk. 2013-10-10. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  14. ^ Stephen Lloyd. "Deputy council leader chosen as Tory candidate to replace Arbuthnot". Get Hampshire. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  15. ^ Paul Goodman (2013-11-24). "The final four for South East Cambridgeshire". Conservative Home. Retrieved 2013-11-25. 
  16. ^ "Lucy Frazer chosen as Conservative candidate for South East Cambridgeshire". Conservative Home. 
  17. ^ Francis, Paul (2013-11-15). "Conservative officials to hold 'open primary' to select candidate to replace Tonbridge and Malling MP Sir John Stanley". Kentonline.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  18. ^ "The Conservative Party | News | News | Dr Tania Mathias chosen to stand up for local people in Twickenham". Conservatives.com. 2013-09-06. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  19. ^ "You choose! | Wealden". Wealdenconservatives.com. 2013-09-27. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  20. ^ "Scots Tories to trial US 'primary' election system". The Scotsman. 2013-11-01. Retrieved 2013-11-22. 
  21. ^ "The Conservative Party | News | News | Marcus Fysh selected for Yeovil". Conservatives.com. 2013-07-31. Retrieved 2013-11-22.