No hiding place for Lib Dems in Brighton and Hove

Mark Collins from the Brighton and Hove Liberal Democrats has a letter in todays Argus saying that Brighton Lib Dems oppose higher tuition fees. He rightly points out that every Lib Dem MP signed the pledge to vote against any rise in tuition fees.

“Being in government doesn’t change those views, and it does not change a pledge”, he writes.

He says that he will march proudly against the rise and for “the future of higher education” in the nationwide demo on November 10th.

But what he can’t get away with is that it is his MPs and his Party that is making it possible for the Coalition Government to make these cuts.

There is no way back for the Lib Dems in Brighton and Hove, not as long as they are betraying every principle that they once claimed to have had. And decent activists, like Mark Collins, do themselves no help whatsoever by pretending that there is a difference between activists and what their MPs are doing on their behalf. It is the activists who helped Norman Baker and Stephen Lloyd get elected in Lewes and Eastbourne.

If Mark wants to make a real difference, and wants to put real pressure on his coalition MPs is to resign from the Lib Dems and join Labour or the Greens.

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4 Responses

  1. I’m never quite sure which political party you support, but let me just make a few points:
    – Labour were the ones who introduced top up fees, not to mention got us into the economic situation that is necessitating these cuts. Arguing that someone who is anti-cuts should join labour is laughably partisan
    – If you think that local politics and national politics are the same, perhaps you should rename this as “Brighton uninformed tribalism”
    – You say there’s no going back since they’re “betraying every principle…they…had” How can that be the case when Mark, and many other members of the party, are standing up and making their opposition counted? Sounds like standing up for your principles to me, but then again, I’m not on the desperately trying to make smoke signals from my tribal campfire.

    I could go on and on, but I’ll leave it by saying- if you genuinely care about the Green/Labour position in Brighton or anywhere, you don’t do them any disservice by your painfully transparent, unsubstantiated and poorly reasoned opinionating.

  2. *any service

  3. What about all those Labour members on stop the war demos in the Blair years?

    Personally I’ve given up on the LDs for the time being, but I’d still grant Mark Collins and his ilk the right to stay and fight their corner. Labour are very tainted on this issue, as per the previous comment. The Greens have never really had to wrestle with the demands of power and of balancing a budget. That doesn’t mean they can’t pull it off, but I have my doubts.

    The BPB’s prediliction for trashing the Liberal Democrats at every opportunity certainly subtracts credibility from his pronouncements in general.

  4. Lib Dem MP’s can’t even use the “we haven’t got a Lib Dem majority” line.

    Individual MP’s chose to sign personal pledges – now they are personally breaking their word.

    LibDem MPs may not be in a position to implement their manifesto, but individual MP’s have no reason to break their word.

    Lib Dems stabbed EU-Sceptics in the back over their promise of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, now they stab their own voters in the back over tuition fees!

    ps. When I ran (UKIP – Hove), I refused to sign any ‘pledges’ because my fist responsibility would be to the electorate… However much I agreed with the cause, I have too much integrity to allow any conflict of interest…

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