Initially, The Animal Protection Party was set up to test a new political ideology, to fight anti-animal incumbent MPs who had a small majority. It was hoped that this campaign would unseat our chosen MPs and in doing so promote the animal rights message. Since we launched, several organisations have taken this principle on board, notably several welfare and lobbying groups like the League Against Cruel Sports and other political campaigners such as Animals Count.
However, we believe this General Election will be like no other. There are too many issues for people to contest, the Iraq War , Afghanistan, the economy (particularly the bankers), the issue of Parliamentary expenses and the possible repeal of the hunting act, to name but a few. Against this background many parties, independents and lobbying groups have already registered their intent to stand or support candidates in seats with small majorities. Put this together with the unpopularity of Labour (shown in most opinion polls), and it could render our role superfluous.
So what do we do? Do we take the easy option, stand next to the, ‘Keep Our Local Hospital Open’ candidate, get a 0.1% of the overall vote and pick up a ‘just glad to be here' award or do we stand in an area where the animal abuse is so overwhelming that we expect to get beaten up rather than win anything?
As with most animal rights activists, our mantra has always been to go ‘where angels fear to tread.’ And with this in mind we have decided to attack the major animal abusers no matter what their majority. We will stand in Oxford, in Huntingdon, and in Vauxhall against Kate Hoey, a Labour MP who also acts as chairperson for the Countryside Alliance. We will also stand in several other areas of key animal abuse still to be confirmed.
For some people this may be political suicide. For us there are only opportunities. In a recent article in the Times Newspaper the journalist reported that there were 900 staff working at Huntingdon Life Sciences yet our research shows that there over 80,000 who live in that area and are registered to vote. Surely even on an educational platform these kind of odds are worth taking risks on.
We will be employing old school tactics. On the box campaigning, distribution of leaflets, knocking on doors and running stalls in high streets. If you want to join us then please get in touch, you will be most welcome. Remember a lot of these places have become no go campaigning areas since the erosion of civil liberties but we have certain rights as a political party and those rights will be put fully into force as we take on the real demons of animal abuse. Our time has come.