Natalie Bennett: “we really need to transform society”
In a recent spike in popularity, the Green party’s membership-count doubled since the start of the year. Party’s leader Natalie Bennett told WNOL with nearing 30,000 members, the Greens “now have the numbers, the force and the money to be able to keep presence up,” ahead of the 2015 general elections
In latest YouGov polls this morning, the Greens are ahead of the Liberal Democrats with eight per cent of votes, whilst the coalition partners poll fifth with seven per cent.
The Greens current sign up rate, revealed by The Guardian, displays approximately 1,000 members join the party every week welcoming a new member every 10 minutes.
Although displaying particular popularity in the south of the country, the Greens have drawn membership figures from the northwest, Yorkshire and Wales in recent weeks.
“Yorkshire is an area where we’ve got a lot of new parties starting up in areas that haven’t been covered before and so it really is a broad spread” says Bennett.
This October, the party revealed plans to secure a list of 12 seats, those include: Brighton (Green), Reading East (Tory), York Central (Labour), Holborn and St Pancras (Labour) where Bennett is standing, Cambridge (Lib Dem), Oxford East (Labour), Solihull (Lib Dem), Bristol West (Lib Dem), Liverpool Riverside (Labour), Sheffield Central (Labour), Norwich South (Lib Dem) and St Ives (Lib Dem).
Bennett told WNOL, with “things continuing much as they are with us stronger than we’ve ever been before, that leaves us with winning a decent share of those twelve seats that we’ve identified.”
Ms Bennett explained voters are turning away from the “business as usual parties” as they’re failing to address the economic, political, social and financial crisis’.
“We really need to transform society that it works for the common good and not just the few, they’re not offering answers so people are looking for answers elsewhere.”
This years figures show a remarkable increase in the popularity of the ‘alternative party’.
With the rise of Ukip, having picked up two seats in Rochester and Strood and Clacton in recent months, the anti-Europe party have been confirmed to feature as part of the television debates in the run up to 2015.
Having been rejected by ITN and the BBC to feature as part of the TV debates, Bennett proceeds to appeal to be heard by the broadcasters to stand along side Labour, the Conservatives, Lib Dems and Ukip.
The party leader followed to explain the TV debates “will be unbalanced if you have Ukip pulling everything to the far right, pulling everything to the anti immigration, pulling towards the let’s go back to the 1950’s.”
“It would do real damage to British democracy if we’re not, we’ve nearly 300,000 people who’ve signed the petition saying we should be there, and this is clear appetite for what we have to say.”
“Lets go into the 21st century and live in the 21st century way, not stigmatising immigrants and immigration, not failing to acknowledge that there’s problems with things like housing, low wages, crowded schools and hospitals and the failure of government policy not caused by immigration.”
In the lead up to 2015, it’s easy to get caught up in the political buzz that surrounds Westminster. The overshadowing reality of a poor turnout looms over the heads of politicians following the 2010 election turnout of 65 per cent.
Bennett urges voters, “register to vote so you can have your say so you’re not disenfranchised,”
“We could have a result that looks utterly unlike any other election result than ever before and it’s really in the voters hands.”
Ms Bennett told WNOL Westminster need’s to make a huge transition for the future of politics and there is a need for revolution. She explains that privatisation is “a failed model” and “the terms of the debate need to be changed”.
“The idea that we can keep going with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer… it clearly can’t.”
Bennett told WNOL ahead of 2015 “there could be a lot of seats won with not much more than 25 per cent of the vote,”
“If you have four way marginal, that’s all you need and that means I refuse to predict what the possibilities are if that happens because its just who knows, its so different to anything that’s been before.”
Ms Bennett explains that as a result, the UK could see the first past the post electoral system, adding Britain would need to seek constitutional reform, as this system would fail the nation.
“What we’re calling for is a peoples constitutional convention, draw people randomly from around the country representing the whole country put them with the experts and give them the time and the resources and say what should our constitution look like, start again from scratch and get people to draw it up.”
Pictures: Green Party