Potential candidates

So, what fun would this blog be if we weren’t allowed to wildly speculate about who might be running for the major posts up for election in August? I’ll confine myself, at this point, to writing about Leadership and Deputy Leadership candidates who have been mentioned around the blogosphere, although it’s worth remembering that important GPEX posts such as Chair, Elections and External Communications are also up for election at the same time. A later post will be covering that.


The big job – and one which doesn’t have particularly high barriers to candidacy. Anyone standing must have been a Party member for three complete years and have nomination signatures from twenty Party members, but then..voila!

Adrian Ramsay – Current Deputy Leader, target Parliamentary candidate and former Norwich councillor, Adrian hasn’t yet made a declaration of his intentions.

Peter Cranie – Lead Euro Election candidate in the North West region in 2009, and again in 2014, as well as a former member of GPEX, Peter has said he will declare his intentions within a couple of weeks.

Jenny Jones AM – A current Assembly member and recent Mayoral candidate, Jenny has ruled herself out.

Cllr Darren Johnson AM – Also a current Assembly member, former Mayoral candidate and target Parliamentary candidate in 2010, Darren has yet to declare his intentions. Most think it is unlikely he will stand, however.

Jean Lambert MEP – The sitting MEP for London has ruled herself out of the race.

Keith Taylor MEP – Sitting MEP for the South East and former Principal Speaker, he has not yet declared his intentions.

Derek Wall – Perennial standard bearer for Green Left and former Principal Speaker, he has ruled himself out of this race due to objections to the position of leader. (EDIT – Or perhaps not…his latest position is that he isn’t ruling anything out totally…so we shall see!)

Natalie Bennett – Former GPEX member, leading light in Green Women and 2010 Parliamentary candidate for Holborn & St Pancras. Said to be thinking about a run for the leadership.

Cllr Andrew Cooper – Potentially a ‘dark horse’ candidate, Cllr Cooper (Kirklees) has been mentioned by a number of people as an engaging public figure who could broaden the Party’s appeal.

Cllr Jason Kitkat – The current Green Party leader of Brighton council has ruled himself out of the race.

There are many more potential candidates….indeed, part of the uncertainty of the early part of the race is that pretty much anyone with a public profile has been mentioned. It remains to be seen how many actually stand.


A number of the potential candidates for Leader mentioned above could instead stand for Deputy. Some people have also been specifically mentioned as potential deputy candidates through the rumour mill….although the gender of the Deputy will be determined by the gender of the successful Leadership candidate….

Cllr Alex Phillips – Popular in the Party due to her stand against Labour’s council tax freeze in the recent Brighton budget negotiations, she is a current Brighton councillor and former Chair of the Young Greens.

Adam Ramsay – A Green activist with strong links to anti-cuts campaigning and direct action movements, Adam has been suggested as another youthful candidate for Deputy Leader.

Cllr Maya de Souza – One of only two Green councillors in London following the Lib Dem surge of 2010, Maya has the advantage of prominence in one of the Party’s strongest regions.

Right, that’s enough random speculation from me. I suspect I may look back at this list in a few weeks and shake my head ruefully as the contest is duked out between people I never considered. Such is politics!

Leave a comment


  1. jimjepps

     /  15/05/2012

    I think it’s worth remembering that people can stand as co-leaders too, which may well happen.

    Keith Taylor has now declared his intention not to stand.

    I would be stunned if Maya ran for deputy, although she did serve on GPEx and would be an interesting choice.

  2. mattsellwood

     /  15/05/2012

    The potential for co-leaders is probably another post I want to write at some point. I’m dubious, and always have been, to be honest. It sort of feels like it would be a retreat back to Principal Speakers with another name, and I think a lot of people would be unhappy with that. We’ll see, though. :)

  3. Elisabeth Whitebread

     /  15/05/2012

    Tony Juniper has decided not to stand, having been asked by a few people.

    Here’s a few more fairly random names that I’ve seen being bandied about online:
    Tess Green
    Rupert Read
    Emma Pruen
    Gina Dowling

    Totally loving this by the way. Such an important decision, and speculation is fun!

  4. Derek stood for deputy leader in the past. Meaning that if he chooses not to stand then it has nothing to do with his view on the position. (perhaps ask people before supposing such specific things.)

  5. jimjepps

     /  15/05/2012

    Hi Greenwestborough, I think Derek said on twitter that he wasn’t standing because he didn’t agree with the position of leader. That might no square with having run for deputy, an I see your point, but that is his public position – unless he changes his mind.

  6. jimjepps

     /  15/05/2012

    Elisabeth – yes it’s fun and important :)

    Gina would be a good candidate and I’d like to see more of her on he national scene – or perhaps she should run for chair? Certainly if Peter Cranie was running there wold be a problem it risk putting the top two NW Euro candidates in the top two positions – which might leave the rest of the arty a little neglected!

  7. mattsellwood

     /  15/05/2012

    While Derek did say on Twitter that he was too busy with his new book to stand and that he didn’t like the title of leader in any case, he is now saying that he wouldn’t rule anything out. He seems keen to persuade Adam Ramsay to stand instead, though. All intriguing stuff. :)

  8. Douglas Coker

     /  15/05/2012

    This blog is a very good idea Jim – well done. As well as considering contenders I think we should be asking what it is we want of a leader. For starters they absolutely must be able to present and represent the Party, Party policy and the green agenda extremely well in the media. We may not all feel comfortable with this but … !! And a good leader must play a major part, along with a strong GPEx, in the internal workings of the Party. There is always “room for improvement”.

    Other thoughts. For some time I’ve been concerned about about the need to develop strength in depth. The potential is clearly there. In some ways maybe Caroline, more immediately post the B’ton election victory, should have stood down as leader. She is firmly established as a star and will continue to be in demand irrespective of any formal leadership position . We need to show to voters we have a number of impressive members and are not overdependent on CL.


  9. jimjepps

     /  15/05/2012

    It’s an interesting idea that she should have stood down immediately – in hindsight I think that would have been a good idea.

    However, we were in a new situation and I don’t think anyone knew whether the MP role would work well with that of leader which, I think, it did not – for her and us. But on balance I think the time was good. To leave it another two years would have been a disaster in two years time just before the general election – now, just after an election it gives everyone time to settle down and realise it’s not a crisis, but it is an opportunity.

    That’s my view anyway.

    If any of you would like to “pen” a piece for this site by the way, please do – it’s not intended to just be me and matt.

  10. Ross

     /  16/05/2012

    The idea of Caroline standing down in Autumn 2010 is interesting to us as we understand the internal dynamics and philosophy of the Greens (because we are the Greens!) but I fear that from an outside perspective it would look like she took on the role of leader just to win herself a constituency, particularly on top of the fact that she only stood in 2010 lending some outside the party to speculate that she was stabbing Keith in the back by taking his seat-to-be. We all know that to be nonsense but I reckon Caroline has waited long enough for her departure to look like nothing but a principled step-down.

  11. Gus Hoyt

     /  16/05/2012

    Be good to have a link to all candidates – real or not for email and twitter.
    So people can have a more day-to-day idea of who they are voting for. Cheers.

  12. Hi Gus, I think it might be better to link once people declare – otherwise we might be directing a load of unwanted traffic their way! :)

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