Portsmouth Independent snubs offer from Nigel Farage and is throwing his weight behind Penny Mordaunt instead

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George Madgwick, the leader of the Portsmouth Independent Group, has snubbed an offer from Nigel Farage to stand for Reform and is instead urging residents to vote for Penny Mordaunt.

Madgwick has told Portsmouth residents to back Mordaunt’s re-election in Portsmouth North after he decides not to stand in the general election. Madgwick said he declined an offer from Nigel Farage to stand for Reform UK last week, saying, “I don’t believe it is a democratic party – they’re set up like a business with no real voting or democratic structure.”

In an online statement, Madgwick explains his decision: “I’ve decided not to stand as I don’t feel it’s best for our community. My aim is to always get our area the best representation it can. So, I’ve decided that in this election, I am going to support and endorse Penny Mordaunt to continue her role as our MP.

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“She is a respected national figure who has never forgotten that it is the people of Portsmouth she serves. She has a huge amount of experience, not just in politics, but in business and all sectors, and we need people like that in Parliament. She is also someone who fights for us.”

Penny Mordaunt has a considerable local following in Portsmouth. A recent poll showed Mordaunt is 5 per cent ahead of the Conservative national poll rating, although a YouGov poll this week suggests her seat could be up for grabs on July 4. Mordaunt expressed her gratitude, saying: “I work for everyone in my community, and it is only by working together that we get things done. I am delighted to have this support.”

However, Amanda Martin, the Labour Party candidate for Portsmouth North said that “people in Portsmouth want change” and she is the only candidate to deliver it.

“Every day people on the doorstep across our city tell me nothing works anymore and the country is in a mess,” she said. “Eleven-hour waits for ambulances, schools literally crumbling, food and fuel bills rising monthly, criminals roaming the streets because the prisons are full and our seas full of sewage.

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“Labour’s plan will deliver economic stability, cut NHS waiting lists, launch a new border security command, set up Great British Energy, crack down on anti-social behaviour and recruit 6,500 new teachers.”