Why you must vote

This time next week we will know the scores on the doors after the election.

We know the result is expected to be close, with no party likely to win outright victory. The horse-trading will be starting on the morning after the night before.

I urge you to cast your vote to help make a choice that could last five years. Do not sit at home or make an excuse. Go and vote.Voting in General ElectionYou could be the difference between a Labour government with Ed Miliband as Prime minister or another five years of Cameron and the Tories.

Last night’s interview on BBC 1 helped sharpen the choice. We must never forget or forgive Cameron’s refusal to go head-to-head with a Miliband who has grown in confidence and stature during this campaign.

There are six days, including today, until polling on Thursday, May 7.

Put the date in your diary – you don’t want to miss it.

“Can the poor, vulnerable, elderly and disabled cope with a further five years of this onslaught?”

Doctor’s Fury at Tory Benefit Threat

Hannah Fearn writing in The Independent today – More than sixty leading doctors have attacked the Conservative Party’s plans to examine whether people with mental health, drug or alcohol problems should be forced to take up treatment.

Top figures in health care, including the psychoanalyst Susie Orbach (pictured), say the manifesto pledge to consider reducing or withdrawing benefits for those who refuse treatment “undermines a fundamental principle” of medical care – the ability to give informed consent.

Susie OrbachThe letter, signed by GPs, public health specialists and psychiatrists, argues that it is “wholly inappropriate to threaten the withdrawal of benefits in order to influence that¬† decision”.

A spokesman for the Conservatives said: “It is not fair to ask hard-working taxpayers to fund the benefits of people who refuse to accept the support and treatment that could help them get back to a life of work.”

“Where on earth is this Tory party coming from? They are utterly opposed to putting the wellbeing of mentally ill and disabled people in front of their carte blanche authority to save money at their expense.”