Letter: Sleaze: Tories finally act after 18 years

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The Independent Online
Sir: Your leading article (8 April) on Martin Bell's candidacy did not address an important democratic issue. Getting rid of one sleazy backbencher was not a good enough reason for Labour and the Liberal Democrats to deny the voters of Tatton their right to vote for the parties and manifestos of their choice. That is why I offered through your columns last week to stand as an independent pro-Labour candidate.

If Mr Bell remains as a candidate he should, at the very least, indicate which party he would normally support during the lifetime of the next parliament; which policy pledges from the party manifestos he would support or oppose; whether he will take up each and every allegation of political sleaze, during the election and during the next parliament, whichever party is involved; and how he intends to finance his campaign and keep it fully independent of the Labour and Liberal Democrat machines.

RICHARD HELLER

London SW9

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