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Monday 10 April 2017

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Local elections 2017: final list of TUSC candidates

There are 78 Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) candidates standing in the local elections taking place on May 4th, contesting elections across 24 local authorities.

In Wales there are 22 council candidates standing this time, contesting seats in five local authorities. In England there are 37 candidates, standing across 13 councils. In addition, TUSC is fielding candidates for the mayor of Doncaster and the new directly-elected mayor of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (the 'Metro-Mayor').

Scottish TUSC, which organises autonomously, is standing 19 candidates, contesting seats across six councils. For further information about the campaign in Scotland e-mail [email protected] or call 07889-135-533.

Challenging the Blairites

The TUSC conference in January set the criteria for electoral challenges in this year's contests, against the backdrop of Jeremy Corbyn's leadership of the Labour Party and the constant threat from Labour's Blairite right-wing to overthrow him (see http://www.tusc.org.uk/17332/05-02-2017/tusc-conference-debates-election-plans-and-anti-cuts-campaigning).

No TUSC candidates, it was agreed, should against Labour candidates who are known to have come out in support of Jeremy Corbyn in last year's Labour leadership contest. In addition, the preparedness of the Labour candidates to fight cuts to local public services had to be tested in each case.

As a result TUSC is only contesting seats in which the Labour candidates either publically supported Owen Smith's summer coup or stayed 'neutral' as the campaign to overthrow Jeremy Corbyn was under way. And TUSC is not standing against Labour candidates who will vote for no cuts budgets in the council chamber.

This carefully calibrated approach has had its impact on the scale of TUSC's electoral challenge, particularly in England. This year's election cycle there sees contests only in the county councils (with the exception of Doncaster), just six of which have Labour-led administrations. This has made it harder to test out where the Labour candidates stand, not in words but in practise, on fighting austerity.

The situation is different in Wales, however, where right-wing Labour is the dominant force in local government. And in Wales there are 22 TUSC candidates this year, up from the 14 TUSC candidates (in four councils) who stood in the last set of Welsh council elections in 2012.

A full list of all the TUSC candidates can be found at http://www.tusc.org.uk/txt/398.pdf