Postal vote deciding Tory candidate

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Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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The Conservatives will hold a postal primary to decide who contests the upcoming Rochester and Strood by-election for the party.

The by-election was triggered by the defection to Ukip of former Tory MP Mark Reckless, who rocked the party when he announced his switch in allegiances on the eve of the Conservative conference last month.

A Tory source said the primary, which will allow local people to vote for the Conservative candidate to fight the by-election, was in “marked contrast” to Ukip’s approach.

The source said Ukip had a track record of “parachuting” candidates into constituencies to contest by-elections rather than choosing someone from the local area.

Prime Minister David Cameron has written to every constituent on Rochester and Strood’s electoral roll to inform them of the primary. The candidates will be announced in due course.

Mr Reckless is currently ahead in opinion polls in the constituency where he won in the 2010 general election.

The polls suggest Mr Cameron faces a tough fight to avoid a highly-damaging by-election defeat in the Kent seat.

Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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