General Election: Reform UK candidate for Mid Bedfordshire says he has 'unfinished business'

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The Reform UK candidate for Mid Bedfordshire said the “seismic” by-election result means he has some “unfinished business”.

Dave Holland, who stood for the party during last year’s by-election, said: “You put in an awful lot of legwork and then you want to build on that going forward.

“It would be an awful waste to have wasted those five months trekking around the countryside.

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“Everyone knows me, they haven’t voted for me yet, but give it time. I see it as a long-term project and I don’t know how to quit.”

Dave Holland Reform UK Image: Supplied by the candidateDave Holland Reform UK Image: Supplied by the candidate
Dave Holland Reform UK Image: Supplied by the candidate

Holland said since the election was called a couple of weeks ago he had knocked on around 2,000 doors.

“My target is to hit 20,000-25,000 plus leafleting, which is a big target in a month, but we’ll see what we can achieve,” he said.

Holland said he was disappointed with October’s by-election result, but a lot has happened since then.

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“I was disappointed because I’d had more pledges [to vote] on the door than we received,” he said.

“But, I also had over a dozen phone calls from people saying ‘I told you I was going to vote for you when I got in the ballot box, but after [the Conservatives] rung me up repeatedly and badgered me I was too worried about Labour getting in so I voted for [them]. ‘I’m really sorry, I won’t do it again’, I realised how stupid I was’.

“That by-election was the first time that our vote share had made the difference between the Tories winning and losing.

“And it was seismic, and I didn’t appreciate that at the time.

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“Because ever since then every Tory who’s gone on the TV has said ‘don’t vote for reform because it’s a wasted vote’ and they mentioned us every single time and it moved the party on.

“So whereas we were pulling 5 per cent eight months ago, we’ve gone on to 15 per cent, depending on which poll you look at.

“But I think with [Nigel Farage now standing] I think that’ll jump. another four or five points

“Within a couple of weeks we’re going to be level pegging with the Tories or ahead of the Tories.

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“Now when I knock on doors and say I’m Reform they say ‘great I love that, I’m voting for you'”, he said.

Holland also repeated his by-election promise that he will be an accessible MP, holding at least 12 surgeries a year and being “easy” to contact via a phone call.

“If I become an MP then my PA will be at my side with my phone number. Constituents will be calling my PA, rather than calling me because MPs are busy people. But they’ll be calling ‘me’ rather than calling a switchboard.

“My plan is to be across everything and know everything,” he said.

He added that nothing had happened since October.

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“The net migration into the country is financially unsustainable. How much of our services have increased to cover the extra 4 million people that have come into this country in the last decade? Everything is broken, the NHS is on its knees, and the cost of living has gone up.

“There’s too many people chasing too few services and too few people prepared to pay for it.”

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