MP opens up on the reasons why he switched to the Tories from Labour

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Speaking to GB News, Lee Anderson, said he became tired of former Labour colleagues “hating” others just for disagreeing with their views. 

He also suggested many lacked a sense of the real world saying: “You couldn’t put them in the local Wetherspoons.”

Mr Anderson opened up to Gloria De Piero, who he previously worked for when she was a Labour-MP.

In a far-ranging interview, the 55-year-old father-of-two admitted the hardest part of his defection in 2018 was explaining the decision to his Socialist and Jeremy Corbyn supporting son, Harry.

“I was left thinking these (Labour) people would never get voted in. They are seen as political lunatics – so far removed from what actually working-class people believe in – these are ideological politicians”

Lee Anderson, the MP for Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, told GB News’ Real Me series: “In places like Ashfield, I was left thinking these (Labour) people would never get voted in. They are seen as political lunatics – so far removed from what actually working-class people believe in – these are ideological politicians. 

“With the rest of the Labour Party, I always found that if you did have a difference of opinion – they hated you, and they wouldn’t speak to you again. 

In the Tory party I clash with colleagues in private over policy or which direction we’re going in, but at the end of the day we’re still colleagues. We’ll have a pint at the end of the night and move on.”

Detailing how his move to Labour impacted the relationship with his son, Mr Anderson said: “He was a member of the Labour Party and a big Jeremy Corbyn fan as well. So, he was very upset when I joined the Conservative Party. But you know what? Blood is thicker than water, you get on with these things and we are absolutely fine now.”

Mr Anderson has also addressed the recent row which saw him claim families could feed themselves for 30p.

“I set up a food project with my local food bank last year – probably 18 months ago – where we got a chef in, and we cooked on a budget,” he explained.

“As a matter of fact, the chef said to me that you could feed a family of five for £50 a week and I said he was talking rubbish. So, I challenged him, and we got the college involved. We got a film crew there, so it was being filmed. I went to the ALDI and bought the ingredients, gave it to him, and he actually cooked 170 odd metres for £50, which worked out at 30 pence each.

“So, the point was to try and get lots of media attention. But as soon as I said it in the Commons, everybody was talking about it, and that’s all I wanted. I wanted the whole country to talk about it, because we have got young people now in this country who cannot cook a meal from scratch and if they could, if we taught cooking in schools now and showed people how to budget and how to buy ingredients from scratch, then their money would go a lot further. 

“When it all kicked off and I was getting a tough time in the Commons from some of the Labour MPs, I actually wrote to every single Labour MP to invite them to come up to Ashfield, to the food bank to have a go. Not one accepted. There’s your answer. They don’t want answers to solutions. They just want to score political points.”

Meanwhile Mr Anderson has also opened about some of the personal challenges he has faced including a cancer battle – and how his wife, Sinead, who suffers from cystic fibrosis, recently underwent a lifesaving lung transplant. 

Commenting on how his wife is now he said: “She is much better than she was. The physical part of the transplant is difficult, but the mental part is living with the thought that you’ve got somebody’s organs inside your body. 

“But we met the donor’s family, we met them several times, and we’ve got a good relationship with them, and she’s fine now. She’s a councillor, she’s at the County Council and she’s the District Councillor. So, yeah, things are good.”

Mr Anderson also revealed how he’d overcome his own health battles after being diagnosed with testicular cancer at 36. 

“They whipped it off, and the following day they sent me for another scan and said you’ve got it in your lungs as well,” he said.  

“I look at some of the Union leaders, look at some of the Mick Lynch’s of this world, and I think he’s a despicable man. I think we’ve just come through two years of hell with COVID, now we’ve now got a war in Ukraine and, you know, the country should be coming together and uniting.”

“I thought, well, ‘this is not good’. So, I said to my dad, ‘I think I’ve got it in my lungs. I’ve got to go back’. He says, ‘well, don’t worry, if you die, I’ll look after the kids’. 

“That’s my dad being blunt! It turned out that it wasn’t a secondary tumour, it was just from working down the pit. That’s what it was. So, that was a tough time, because I’d got two little children living with me.”

Mr Anderson also addressed the current rail-dispute saying it couldn’t be compared to the miners strikes of the 1980s. 

“It’s different with the mining industry,” he said. “I mean, where I’m from in Nottinghamshire, the coal mine – when it was open – it was the whole community. It’s not just about a coal mine, it’s got a football team, it’s got a cricket team, it’s got a rugby team, it’s got a social club, we’ve got tennis courts, we’ve got putting greens – everything revolves around the pit being there. It’s a full community. 

“The community even police themselves. So, when a coal mine does go in a small village like that, things just change overnight. That’s the bit that the Conservative Party at the time and Margaret Thatcher didn’t get. They didn’t understand that you were just ripping the guts out of a complete community, and if you’re going to do that, then you’ve got to replace it with something – and they didn’t. It took us 30 odd years to get over that. 

“People have got good jobs now, and a better standard of living, and better houses; but it was the community.  But if you fast forward now, I look at some of the Union leaders, look at some of the Mick Lynch’s of this world, and I think he’s a despicable man. I think we’ve just come through two years of hell with COVID, now we’ve now got a war in Ukraine and, you know, the country should be coming together and uniting. 

“We just lost our Queen. And what does he decide to do? He decides to try and hold the country to ransom by having these strikes, which I don’t support. I don’t think the majority of people in Ashfield support these strikes. 

“So, I think, just help the country. Get around the table. Let’s talk. Because at the end of the day, most people in this country – even Labour Party voters – aren’t some rabid left-wing revolutionaries. They just want a decent life, they want a decent wage, they want the kids to go to a decent school, and decent healthcare from the local hospital. That’s all we want. It’s not much.”

Credit: GB News

Photo licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

3 COMMENTS

    • You are a typically nasty labour person. People like you are not liked or respected. You might be happier living in China, Russia or Belarus! We don’t need people like you in our world.
      If you have nothing nice to say or unable to qualify exactly what you mean without insulting people because they are only wrong if you don’t consider their their beliefs or reasons are the same as yours – then I suggest you say nothing at all or restrict your comments to the gutter that is twitter.

  1. You have my utmost respect and admiration, everything you say is honest and true and you are a very special person for standing us and telling the truth, we probably have millions who think like you and agree with everything you say but for some reason people in this country seem to be more frightened of the left than they are of terrorists.

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