Total Politics has a short interview with Luke Wilkins who saved up his McDonald’s wages to run as an independent for Parliament.
At 18 years old, he made a few headlines recently when it emerged he had collected together his £4.65 an hour wage from his job at McDonald's to raise the £500 deposit needed to stand.
He is one of hundreds of independents who will be standing at this election. Many will be doing so as part of the new Independent Network, which quotes our research as part of its background and inspiration. It has been set up to provide support to the people who have no party machines behind them and so usually start from a natural disadvantage.
The Tory party is offering a new Tax Break for Married couples and civil partnerships in a bid to support stable relationships. The tax reform will be modest. But neither does it support marriage, it supports a certain type of marriage - one that is out of touch with modern relationships and makes for unhappy couples. If the token £150 a year actually succeeded in changing behaviour, it could increase separation and divorce.
For years, the Lib Dems have struggled with the accusation of ‘irrelevance’. They have pointed out quite rightly that smaller parties struggle against an electoral system which works against them, and media which give most of the attention to the two big parties.
For Nick Clegg to now lay into the SNP leader as "irrelevant" and a "two bit player" smacks of double standards. Nether does it do anything to encourage respect, or aid the development of a ‘new politics’. But the most important point is that it perpetuates an arrogant narrative also held by the two big parties, which suggests that smaller parties have little of value to say.