I have had the honour to represent Finchley since 1959, but I can remember no General Election where the divide between the Conservatives and the other parties was so clear.
On the one hand, we have the Conservatives with a proven track record of cutting inflation, cutting income tax and cutting strikes to their lowest for 50 years.
When we became the Government in 1979, we found the British economy in its weakest state for almost 50 years. Today, it is the strongest.
We've used that new economic strength to make huge increases in spending on the health services, the elderly, schools and law and order.
We've spread real wealth throughout the community by helping two-and-a-half million more people own their own homes—and another five million to own shares in British companies for the first time. We've made Britain respected in the world again.
Just contrast, on the other hand, what would happen under Labour.
Their wild spending plans would mean a swift return to soaring inflation. They have admitted they're going to put taxes up.
They're promising to restore all their old powers to the trade union bully boys.
Labour are going to abolish our nuclear defences, and leave us at the mercy of our enemies.
I am proud to have played my part as Prime Minister in helping to make our country, once again, economically strong at home and respected abroad. All I ask is that you, the voter, give me the opportunity to continue the good work.
(2) Finchley Times, 11 June 1987:
For the ninth time of asking … yes, this is my ninth election campaign in Finchley and Friern Barnet and each time I have enjoyed the cut and thrust of debate, the hustle and bustle of electioneering.
Politics is about people and, as MP for 28 years, it has been my pleasure and privilege to meet a great many people in Finchley and Friern Barnet.
When I write and speak about choice and enterprise, I see them playing a vital part in safeguarding our freedom and democracy.
For the more people can do for themselves, the stronger they make the whole community.
The fact that 5,000 tenants have bought their council homes in Barnet is a fine advertisement for choice in a property-owning democracy.
By practising good housekeeping—saving £600m through better management and cutting waste—we are able to serve more people more effectively in the Health Service.
Take Barnet Health Authority for example. It has reduced expenditure on headquarters administration by £1.2m and advanced health provision.
Last February, the District Health Authority agreed to 12 extra surgical beds.
They will be operational in the autumn. The total waiting list has been cut from 4,186 in March last year to 3,545 in March this year.
Not good enough? Well, remember that surgical beds have NEVER been closed for reasons of staff shortages or economy.
And remember, too, that since 1976 (when Labour was in office) there has been a deliberate effort to redistribute health resources to areas less favoured than Barnet.
Nothing will ever be perfect. But this I know. Pensions, health and education are far safer with the Conservatives than they would be with their opponents, because we Tories run a SUCCESSFUL economy.
I believe passionately in the shield and the heart. The shield of nuclear deterrence to protect our nation. A sound-hearted economy to make life better for everyone.
I am sure there are many local issues—the North Circular Road for one—exercising people's minds. I hope to attend to them if I am re-elected as MP today.
But this election is about the future of our country and how Great Britain can help make a safer world.
Don't let us ever forget that.