As a survey of 500 parliamentary candidates across all major parties shows 81% would vote against Trident replacement, candidates from across the political spectrum will today join together in a show of cross-party opposition to Trident replacement.
[Statements and photocall: 10.30-11.30am, Room C, 1 Parliament Street, Westminster]
Candidates from Labour, Liberal Democrats, Greens, SNP and Plaid Cymru will speak in Westminster at the launch of CND’s Vote Out Trident manifesto, pledging to vote against £100bn for new nuclear weapons if elected.
The SNP’s Angus Robertson (Moray) will be joined by Labour’s Catherine West (Hornsey & Wood Green), alongside Liberal Democrat Kelly-Marie Blundell (Guildford), Plaid Cymru’s Jonathan Edwards (Carmarthen East & Dinefwr) and Green Party leader Natalie Bennett (Holborn & St Pancras).
Opposition to Trident replacement is growing amongst candidates across the political spectrum, with a recent CND survey of over 500 candidates across all parties showing that 81% of respondents would vote against Trident replacement.
Jeremy Corbyn MP (Labour), Chair of Parliamentary CND, will also speak at the event to welcome the prospect of an enlarged Parliamentary CND group.
CND General Secretary Kate Hudson said:
‘While David Cameron is attempting to fear-monger over potential coalition negotiations and their impact on Trident replacement, the Conservatives are increasingly isolated on this issue – not only in Westminster but in the UK as a whole.
‘Every other major party has expressed openness to engaging with the question of whether Britain really needs to spend £100bn on a Cold War weapons system which senior military figures have described as “completely useless”.
‘Labour has said it would consider the case for a reduced nuclear weapons system. The Liberal Democrats oppose full replacement of the four submarines. And the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Green Party all want to scrap the lot.
‘The tide is turning on this £100bn Cold War relic. And that’s no surprise when annual spending on our current nuclear weapons outstrips the annual funding gap facing the NHS. Repeated polls show a majority of the British public oppose Trident replacement and a massive 81% of parliamentary candidates surveyed said they would vote against Trident replacement if elected.
‘The public is mobilising to stop this madness. On Monday 13 April, anti-Trident demonstrators will descend on the Ministry of Defence for a street party and protest with musicians and speakers to demand an end to plans to squander over £100bn of our money on a monstrous and useless weapons system.’
Notes to Editors
Survey results are part of CND’s ongoing survey of Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) ahead of the general election. 523 PPCs have responded so far, with responses coming from Conservative, Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat, Plaid Cymru, SNP and UKIP candidates. Of these respondents, 81% (424), say they would vote against Trident.
Candidate responses can be searched by constituency/postcode.
Full results will be published closer to the election.
CND’s Vote Out Trident manifesto urges all parliamentary candidates to pledge to vote against Trident replacement.
The final vote on Trident replacement is expected in 2016. If replaced, Trident will cost more than £100bn over its lifetime.
For further information and interviews please contact Luke Massey, CND’s Press & Communications Officer on 020 7700 2350 or 07968 420 859.