THE Liberal Democrats are "demanding" that Conservatives pay for the "botched" Police and Crime Commissioner election.

It comes after the Conservative Party candidate for the Swindon and Wiltshire Police and Crime Commissioner post was disbarred due to a historical driving offence, preventing him from taking up the position that he was elected to following Monday's count in Salisbury.

A police investigation into how and why Mr Seed was able to stand as a candidate in the first place is currently underway.

The re-run election will now take place on August 19.

Jonathon Seed

Jonathon Seed

The Lib Dems, who came second to Seed, are calling for the Conservative Party to foot the bill rather than the taxpayer and have questioned when the Conservative Party was made aware of the issue.

The Party is being pressured into reveal when they found out that the candidate would be disbarred and why this didn’t come to light prior to polling day last Thursday, which would have prevented the re-run of the election.

'The taxpayer cannot foot the bill for Tory incompetence'

Liz Webster, who finished in second place, said: "It is the Conservatives fault for this botched election and they must pay the price. 

"The taxpayers cannot foot the bill for their incompetence.

"You also have to ask the question as to when they knew that the candidate was ineligible to stand – if it was before last Thursday then why didn’t they say anything? 

"A cynic would think that this was kept quiet because it might damage them electorally."

She added: "We’ve had an enormous amount of people reaching out to us saying that they feel cheated and robbed and I hope this informs their decision the next time we all go to the ballot box in August. 

"I am working with my team to prepare for another campaign but I am determined that the British taxpayer should not have to pay for this debacle."

The re-run of the election could cost in excess of £1m.

ITV news have reported that they approached the Conservative Party and Jonathon Seed eight days before the election but heard nothing back.

Mr Seed is adamant that party officials had told him that his conviction did not disqualify him from the post.

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