Bruce Lawson’s personal site

To the Lib Dems

Yesterday morning, I tweeted “Whoever forms the next government will need support of LIb Dems, and price should be nothing short of full electoral reform.”

This morning, on Pete Aylward’s suggestion I emailed my Lib Dem MP (for whom I voted, if that matters):

“I’d like you to represent my views to Nick Clegg. Please do NOT go into a deal with the Tories and start savaging public services.

“Please support Brown, but make the price of your support a referendum on introducing real voting reform (so number of seats is related to %age of national vote, not tinkering with first past the post as Cameron seems to want to do), and the scrapping of ID cards.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to get a really fair voting system in place that will radically change Britain in a way that will last much longer than any of us will last. Britain voted for change – this is the chance to give it to us.”

Staggeringly, he’s responded by email to say he’s on a train to London to talk to the rest of the party, set out his initial position (remain independent) and suggest I come to a consultation meeting tomorrow or Monday (which I shall, if it fits around my grandmother’s funeral).

(I haven’t reproduced his replies; it seems ill-mannered to do so.)

I’m a bit shocked. The last bloke was Labour, so an MP who talks with (rather than at) constituents is a bit of a novelty round here.

3 Responses to “ To the Lib Dems ”

Comment by Bill Lees

Bruce, since your MP is (I assume)John Hemming, I’d forget about if I were you. The man is a loathsome, philandering (this is incidental, but of note), delusional self-important idiot (who incidentally has zero influence within the Lib Dem party). Nick Clegg is so transparently inclined towards the Tories, you can just about count on him betraying his party in terms of the PR promise for the sake of a sniff of power. Which will of course lead in short order to the Lib Dems swift return to the political wilderness. Clegg should know that his only realistic hope of achieving the LD’s holy grail of PR is a deal with Labour, so I’m slightly bewildered why he is fannying about at such length with Cameron, and it’s the (main) reason why I’d trust Clegg about as far as I could spit him.

So, as they might say in High School Musical, get real, brother.

Comment by Rob Kirton

Bruce. It’s a difficult spot for anybody wishing to see the introduction of PR. As it currently stands, in general the Tories won’t countenance it and Labour can’t deliver it. I think you’ll find a large number of Labour MPs haven’t had the miraculous deathbed conversion Gordon Brown has had. Electoral reform will come about as so many people have had their eyes opened to the unfairness of the current situation and I suspect that covers all political persuasions.

I’d go with you on full PR. Though I suspect it’s going to shock a lot of people when it gives a stronger voice to Tories in the North East of England and Scotland as well as giving the BNP more seats than the SNP. If the people now calling for it are trying to simply form and anti Tory front, then I suggest that they simply stick to that line rather than demand PR and not like the consequences.

FWIW, I could see the likes of Nick Clegg and David Laws (just to name 2) who could work quite easily work in a Tory dominated cabinet. I still can’t quite yet figure whether or not Clegg’s move was brought about my idealism or pragmatism. Given the current figures, A Lib / Lab pact in parliamentary terms could be a short lived phenomenon, where as a Lib / Tory pact could easily see a full 4-5 year term should the parties give it their full blessing (as if….)

All the best of luck with your MP. My last two have proved to be a pair of slimy toe rags who you simply cannot trust (Tony Blair / Phil Wilson).

Comment by Bruce

Bill

“Clegg should know that his only realistic hope of achieving the LD’s holy grail of PR is a deal with Labour, so I’m slightly bewildered why he is fannying about at such length with Cameron”

agreed

“So, as they might say in High School Musical, get real, brother.”

I bow to your superior HSM knowledge!

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