10 October 2007

Where have all the Lib Dems gone?

The big story of the election speculation was not the change in support for the big parties, it was the change in support for the Lib Dems - they have collapsed. Ming - is neither a man people can particularly warm to, or despite his age, a man with 'gravitas'. He just looks like he...
wants to be elsewhere, which is exactly where the Lib Dem support has gone. The recent talk of an election has crowded them out, but Ming has also failed to make any sort of impression. Few people have any idea what the Lib Dems are for anymore.

The latest polls show the Lib Dems at 11%, down from 23% at the 2005 election. This is unbelievable, they have lost more than half their support. It would be like the Tories dropping from their 33% at the last election to 16% now. No Tory leader would survive opinion polls in the high 20s, nevermind that disastrously low.

Now that Brown has bottled the election, the Lib Dems have a chance to get rid of Ming the disaster man. I warned them at the time, that the Lib Dems were heading for a disaster in overlooking Chris Huhne. Why do I care? Because the Lib Dems (under this dysfunctional electoral system) have to be a sort of left of centre yardstick. When Labour are obviously correct and the Tories are being ridiculous, the Lib Dems can state this and the Tory press has less of an impact against two voices saying the same thing rather than Labour alone (the so called 'progressive consensus'). The downside is that for those who do not understand they are voting for their local MP not a national government, Tories can win seats because left of centre voters are split. Still Labour are the party that can do something about that, in the meantime we need the Lib Dems - a party free of electoral responsibility to be able to compete. I am not holding my breath though.


  1. You look like you are ready to hit someone in your blog picture - Harding the hard man.

  2. Benjamin: Oh! I was trying for the 'serious but friendly' look.

  3. Still Labour are the party that can do something about that

    They won't. IF they were going to (as the slippery swines promised) they would've done it by now, instead it's business as usual in NuLab's "I'm alright Jack" brand of right wing Labourism.

    Meantime, the Lib Dems are often quite a way to the left of Labour. That it should come to this.

  4. Do you think we would have got devolved government under Major/Hague/Howard?

    Do you think we would have got PR for devolved government in Scotland, Wales, London or the Euro elections?

    We now have STV for Scottish local elections.

    We are heading for an elected Upper Chamber elected by a PR system.

    We are getting there (slowly) under Labour. There is a possibility we might get AV for Westminster next. Though not proportional, it is a step in the right direction. We just have to push Labour all the way (just as campaigners did with the smoking ban). We need more good people like you in the Labour party, urko. If we can get a majority of members baying for PR and crucially more members higher up and MPs pushing for it, we can get there. It is going to need a big push to get PR for Westminster from a reluctant Labour party but one thing is certain - we won't get it from a Tory government. The Tories have made it clear they are going to entrench FPTP by redrawing boundaries back in their favour and enlarging boundaries - once again for party political gain. We could end up with another generation of right wing Tories in power - when the vast majority of people mostly want left of centre policies.

  5. Considering Labour's atrocious record on civil liberties in the latter half of their time in power. Too much illiberal legislation and offensive action to reiterate here, continuing this week with the utterly stupid 'extreme pornography' ban that forms part of the Criminal Justice bill - see Frank Fisher's column on CiF). Why anyone who cares a whit about liberty would even think about joining the Labour party is utterly beyond me.

    It's the Lib Dems or nothing - the other two are indistinguishable on civil liberties (the Tories say they are going to abandon ID cards, but their voting records and rhetoric tell a different story).

  6. Usual tactic - when your own party is on the ropes - talk about another. Brown's performance has been dire - what a fool he has been. Really pathetic. So I would sort your own act out first.