This is not really a political blog. And I am not a campaigner for any one political party. Nor have I ever even been a member of a party. Nothing in this post should be taken as a personal endorsement of any candidate or even as a suggestion that I have already cast my own vote. As of yet, I don’t know that much about Alan Craig myself. I just want to give you this opportunity to hear more about a Christian who is standing for office and clearly not getting as much media coverage as Ken Livingstone and Boris Johnson.
Over the last few days I received, via e-mail, the following two press releases, which I thought I would share with you in their entirety. Before I do, let me say a couple of things myself about the forthcoming London mayoral elections. For my American readers, some useful background for you is that in the UK very rarely will an openly professing Christian stand for any political office as it is considered a handicap by all our main parties.
When thinking about the fact that there is a Christian standing for London mayor and deciding whether to vote for him, it is worth considering two little-known facts. First, if every churchgoer in London were to actually vote and they all used their first preference vote for Alan Craig, then he would easily become mayor. Second, if even just a small percentage of Christians voted for him as the first choice, then put one of the main party candidates second, he would definitely serve on the London Assembly.
The election will be decided by a simple process as I understand it. The top two candidates from the first preference votes will go into a run-off where the second preference votes are added to the first preference ones to decide who will be mayor. Thus, one should always vote for one of the smaller candidates first if you support them, and want both your preferences to be counted as, contrary to popular understanding, a second preference vote for a less popular candidate is wasted.
Here is the text of both press releases, with the newest one first:
Election Broadcast by the Christian Peoples Alliance and Christian Party
On Wednesday 23rd April 2008 television viewers in London will have the chance to see a Christian vision of London for the GLA Elections.
6.25 pm ITV
6.55 pm BBC1
It will also be available on the BBCi-player and broadcast on BBC Radio.
A preview will be published from 11.55 pm Monday 21st April on the Christian Choice website:
A speech by Alan Craig on the importance of marriage made at the Kensington Temple Hustings is now available on YouTube at:
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For Immediate Release: Sunday 20th April 2008
Christian Leaders Announce Backing for Alan Craig’s London Election Campaign
Christian leaders are urging London voters to back Alan Craig of the Christian Choice in his campaign for mayor and the London Assembly. The group comes from a range of church backgrounds—Anglican, Roman Catholic, the Black Majority Churches, and the Free Church—and say Alan Craig is the outstanding candidate to run the capital. Councillor Craig also tops the London List of Assembly candidates for the Christian Choice, and needs just 5% to qualify for a seat.
Human rights campaigner and a Deputy Speaker in the House of Lords, Baroness Cox of Queensbury said:
“Among all the candidates running for London Mayor, Alan Craig stands out above the crowd. He has shown leadership in industry and for years he’s been devoted to bringing change to the inner-city through serving the community in London’s East End.
But it is his Christian qualities which make him distinctive—brave in facing-up to political correctness, standing by ordinary Londoners and confronting issues like the threatened Mega Mosque, which other politicians won’t touch. London won’t do better than to choose Alan for mayor.”
Mgr John Armitage, Vicar General of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brentwood, praised Alan Craig for his years of service in London’s East End:
“He is a committed Christian, a man of integrity who has a passion for the common good. His service of the people in one of the most socially deprived areas in the country has given hope and encouragement to many people. He has a true desire to serve and help to build strong local communities in London.”
Prominent leader in the Evangelical Alliance and founder of Icthus Christian Fellowship, Roger Forster, said:
“A vote for Alan Craig of The Christian Choice can put the name of Christ officially onto the Greater London Authority, which after so many years must be a good thing. I have every confidence concerning the Christian commitment, integrity and intelligence of Alan.”
Dr Sola Fola Alade leads the Trinity Chapel congregation of major black church, RCCG. He wrote:
“Alan is an honourable and compassionate Christian man. I know him to be a visionary leader who is not afraid to stand for justice and truth. He has shown himself to be a selfless leader, one who has now become a voice of the voiceless and a defender of the helpless. Though a Christian, he is one who reaches out to people regardless of class, colour, or creed.”
Rev Lyndon Bowring, Executive Chairman of campaign group CARE, said:
“Alan Craig is an outstanding Christian leader and a man of the people. London and the GLA needs him and I wholeheartedly commend him to you in the forthcoming mayoral and GLA elections.”
Writing in Christianity Magazine, Premier Christian Radio broadcaster and Chief Executive, Peter Kerridge, wrote:
“Personally, I hope Alan Craig gets onto the London Assembly where I believe his influence would make a positive difference.”
Former London mayoral candidate for the Christian Peoples Alliance, Ram Gidoomal CBE, praised Alan Craig’s business credentials:
“London deserves better than simply a politician for mayor. That’s why Alan Craig is so different—he walks the talk—spending years in sacrificial service in one of London’s most deprived communities. But unlike other mayoral candidates, he comes with significant business experience. He understands that to stay ahead, the capital has to stay competitive, have a high quality of life for all its citizens, and be the British engine-room of innovation and investment. He makes a formidable candidate.”
Christian author, speaker, writer, and founder of Pioneer, Gerald Coates, concluded:
“Alan Craig is just what we need and is suitably equipped to be Mayor of London. He was a successful senior businessman, has more recently worked among the deprived and vulnerable, and is a politician with considerable experience and expertise.”
Colin Dye of Kensington Temple and J. John of the Philo Trust are also backing the campaign.
The Christian Choice is the united electoral option of the Christian Peoples Alliance and Christian Party. It is committed to serving all Londoners regardless of race, faith or background.
For more information:
Telephone: 07873 625396
Promoted and published by P Vickers, The Christian Choice, 85 Tarling Road, London E16.
The following video is the one referred to in the first press release above: