Fair media coverage for all Parties and Independent Candidates throughout an election.
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During the General Election on 8th June 2017 I noticed that the media mainly concentrated on the two largest UK political parties.
As a Christian Independent Candidate to become a Member of Parliament for West Bromwich East during this recent General Election, I was not given any opportunities to discuss my Manifesto or agenda within local or national broadcasts.
Amongst the newspapers, only one local paper asked me for my comments whilst all the other papers wrote a main article about the candidates who represented the major parties and only listed the names of the other candidates without any further comments.
This type of biased coverage is unacceptable as referring to only two parties can lead the British public to believe that there are only two real choices of which party they can vote for.
Smaller parties are often ignored throughout the campaign process, apart from when they are mentioned within mandatory publications.
I petition the UK Government to create a fair process for future elections by ensuring that either:
1) There is fair media coverage across all media platforms e.g. All Parties and Independents are featured within local and national newspapers with the same word count and an unbiased summary. Where there is a TV broadcast, all Parties and Independents should be given the same opportunity and length of recording time to speak on the same programmes.
2) There is no mainstream media coverage. The Government should introduce a fair and managed way for the public to access information on the candidates. A simple solution would be to scrap all media publicity during an election period and only allow the public to receive a leaflet about the candidates and a website link. There could be a centralised website that lists all of the candidates who are taking part. Each candidate could be asked all the same questions and given the same word count to answer them on the website. Similar to a comparison website, this would give the public all the facts that they need to know to make a thoughtful and confident vote.
The problem is that unless people see that politics is a fair process, they are more likely to take the law into their own hands through protest marches and in the worst case scenario, extremism.
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