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27th. June 2008

Dear Editor,

I am writing to explain my decision to stand as an Independent candidate in the Haltemprice & Howden by-election.

As a former Conservative M.P. who rebelled against the Maastricht Treaty under John Major's government, I am appalled by the failure of all the major political parties, despite low election turnouts, to heed the growing cynicism and strong Euroscepticism of large parts of the electorate.

I am particularly incensed by the Government's decision to ignore the veto exercised by the Irish people and press ahead with the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, even though under E.U. rules, the process is supposed to fail if any one country rejects the Treaty. The arrogance of the French, German and British Governments in expecting the Irish Government to sort the problem out, rather than accepting the verdict of the only nation to have consulted its own people, is appalling. Which part of the word "NO" do the Prime Minister and his colleagues fail to understand?

I believe that the Rt. Hon. David Davis is right to be concerned about the erosion of civil liberties, but has chosen entirely the wrong target. Although as a lawyer, I am naturally concerned about the length of time which suspects can spend in custody without being charged, I am much more worried about protecting the public from terrorist outrages. I am perfectly happy to see CCTV in our city centres, and successfully campaigned for their introduction in Barry when I represented the Vale of Glamorgan. People who do not commit crimes have little to fear from cameras, and it is up to central and local government to ensure that the images collected are used to help catch criminals and not for any other purpose.

Mr. Davis seems to have missed the real culprits in removing our liberties; the  politically unaccountable European Commission, the Council of Ministers and the European Court of Justice are eroding our rights every day. Over seventy percent  of our new legislation is coming from Brussels. Our  Parliament is powerless to control or repeal European legislation. After nearly a thousand years during which English common law held sway, our Courts have to recognise that in the event of any conflict, European law prevails. We now have the freedom to do what Brussels allows, instead of having the freedom to do anything not specifically banned by our own Parliament. Mr. Davis and others need to wake up, and stand up for the freedoms of law abiding people who want to restore our national sovereignty before it is too late.

If I am elected, I promise to campaign at every opportunity for a referendum on whether we should continue as an increasingly subservient and servile part of the European Union, or cast off our shackles and become a free and independent nation state. I would call for the referendum campaign to be fairly funded, with no tax payers' money to be spent on distorting the outcome.

Yours faithfully,

Walter Sweeney

Photograph attached.