UK lobbyists are lining up to stand for Parliament at the next
general election. Labour’s parliamentary panel, a list of almost 700
prospective candidates contains lobbyists working for a range of UK
public affairs agencies, including APCO, Westminster Strategy (WS) and
APCO senior associate Ben Coleman, who stood unsuccessfully in 1997 for
the Broxbourne seat is on the list, as is WS account manager Howard
He hopes to be selected for the safe Labour seat of Ashton-under-Lyne,
following the retirement of Robert Sheldon. Profile account manager John
Lehal hopes to take over retiring Government minister Jeff Rooker’s
Perry Barr seat in central Birmingham. Gillian Kirk, LSA account manager
and an active party member, is also standing for selection.
An estimated 30 Labour MPs are standing down at the election which, when
added to the 200 opposition-held seats, should provide one in three of
the listed names with a chance to stand for Parliament.
Advocacy director Robin Squire is the Conservative candidate for
Hornchurch, a seat he held for 18 years until 1997.