SLab hopeful, forced to take the Blair Grand, gets creative
By Helmut D Nyer, our Labour Revisionism Correspondent
A Labour parliamentary candidate who had refused to accept a donation of £1000 from Tony Blair has been told she must accept the cash.
The former prime minister pledged £106,000 to help the party campaign in 106 key battleground seats, but Lesley Brennan who is standing in Dundee East decided to decline the offer.
She was then instructed by Labour's central office in London that the offer was not optional and that she must accept the donation and use it to support her campaign.
In a letter to all 106 candidates, Mr Blair wrote: "I am writing to wish you every success in your efforts to be elected and also to make a donation to your campaign. At some point in the future, or perhaps never, I may ask a favour of you – and I expect you to reciprocate instantly and without hesitation or thought."
On Twitter Ms Brennan said her "instinct" told her not to accept the £1,000 and she had discussed the decision with her team before attempting to decline the cash.
Ms Brennan told the BBC: "As a Labour candidate standing in the Yes City of Dundee, I already have hee-haw chance of being elected. But if I had accepted the blood money from Blair, I would have risked losing my deposit. That's why we turned it down. Also, that letter was a bit creepy.
"I was outraged when London told me I had no choice but to accept. What happened to all this autonomy that Jim keeps going on about? So I was left in a bit of a quandry.
Finally, after chewing it over with my campaign team, we decided to take the cash and use it creatively. So we spent it all on producing this election leaflet."
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