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Ruth Jones: Who Is the New Labour MP For Newport West?

Ruth Jones has been elected as the new MP for Newport West, successfully winning the by-election triggered by the tragic death of Paul Flynn in February of this year.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn welcomed the news, saying that the election “sends a clear message that the people of Newport and Wales are fed up of austerity”.

“I send my warmest congratulations to Ruth Jones on winning Newport West.

Ruth will be a fantastic successor to Paul Flynn and will take up the tireless work he carried out for this community.

Tonight’s result sends a clear message that the people of Newport and Wales are fed up of austerity which has robbed the Welsh economy of £1 billion through needless cuts, and shows support for Labour’s alternative.

Labour will reverse these cuts and support the Welsh Labour government and First Minister Mark Drakeford to rebuild communities like Newport with proper investment to create a society that works for the many, not the few.

I thank Ruth Jones and the whole Labour team for the energetic and positive campaign we ran together to win Newport West so we can keep challenging this chaotic Tory government and build towards a Labour government.”

Jeremy Corbyn MP

Who is Ruth Jones

Newport’s new MP is a former physiotherapist for the NHS with over 30 years service and in 2007 was elected president of the Wales TUC. As such, it is believed she will be an ally of Jeremy Corbyn.

“I worked as a physiotherapist for over thirty years, I’ve worked both under Labour and Tory Governments, and I know the difference that Welsh Labour in particular has made. I really do want to make sure that the NHS remains true to Nye Bevan’s principles, free at the point of delivery and there for all.”

Ruth Jones

Jones has promised to put services and workers rights at the centre of her time in parliament, saying that “I speak up for people who have been treated poorly at work. With this experience [in the NHS], I know what it takes to ensure people get a fair deal and can rely on the vital services that are so important to families across Newport.”

Speaking at her campaign launch, Ruth condemned Conservative austerity.

“The Tories have inflicted a decade of cuts on our public services, slashed the number of police on our streets and driven decent, hardworking people into poverty, they continue to disrespect Newport West and Wales. Their botched Brexit is a disaster, pleasing no one, ignoring the hopes and fears of leavers and remainers alike. Most dangerously, it is jeopardising Newport industries like steel, risking jobs and paralysing local businesses with uncertainty. Newport has a proud history of radical politics – ideas that can change the world, and of people working together to do just that. From the Chartists onwards, Newport has shown that Labour values, embedded in our communities and everyday lives, can deliver hope in even the most challenging circumstances.”

Ruth Jones MP

With references to Nye Bevan and the Chartist movement, Ruth Jones shows her knowledge and commitment to the history of the Labour movement and perhaps shows that the party is finally moving away from the days of empty-suit soundbite politicians of which the electorate have become so tired.

Jones is also highly critical of Conservative cuts to the police, calling on local Conservatives to back her calls to reverse cuts to the force, cuts which have seen the loss of 21,000 officers nationwide since 2010.

“As a MP for Newport I would want to make sure that we looked at the policing and made sure that there was adequate funding, which obviously the Tories have stripped out over the years.”

Ruth Jones MP

Ruth Jones lives in Allt-yr-yn with her husband and is a governor at Glasllwch Primary, where her children attended school. In her free time she sings in a choir and volunteers at a local Night Shelter scheme in the city.

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