Rees rallies party to back campaign
BRISTOL mayoral candidate Marvin Rees has urged the Labour Party to kick the "cynicism" out of politics.
Mr Rees was addressing a rally at the Labour Conference in Manchester, alongside party leader Ed Miliband.
Activists were also urged to redouble their efforts to recapture parts of the South West, and told that Bristol's mayor would be "more powerful than any MP".
After Bristol was the only city to vote in favour of a mayor in May's referendum, the November poll in Bristol is a top priority for Labour, with Mr Rees being given a high billing and activists from around the country urged to come to the city and help with his campaign.
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Mr Rees, who will introduce his party leader ahead of tomorrow's question-and-answer session with members, said: "When I came into the Labour Party I didn't come into just join a club, where we sat around a table and talked to each other.
"What I was really looking for, as I have for my whole life, was to be part of something that had a sense of direction and was a movement and this is what we've been talking about so much over recent months. We need to stop the cynicism, there's a lot of cynicism flying around, a lot of criticism, we're putting answers on the table.
"In Bristol... we don't just want to say 'here are ten things we're going to do for you'. We're saying, this is something we want you to be a part of."
Mr Miliband told supporters his Shadow Cabinet had been impressed by Mr Rees, who is the bookies' favourite to win the November 15 vote.
Next to take the stage was former Cabinet minister Ben Bradshaw, who said Mr Rees would be "much more important than me, much more important than any other Labour MP – he's going to have more power than an MP".
And he was cheered after saying the South West NHS pay consortium, which plans to set local pay rates for staff, was a sign of the "contempt" in which the Government held the region.