Monday, June 19, 2006

How Do These LibDems Keep a Straight Face?

You'll recall that the main plank of the LibDem campaign in Bromley is that Bob Neill, the Conservative Candidate has said he will stay on the GLA as Bromley's elected representative if he wins the by election. So you'd think that the LibDem Ben Abbotts would be promising to resign his Council seat if he wins, wouldn't you? Well you'd be wrong. This is a quote from a letter written to a Bromley constituent who asked the question...

"His role as a councillor will help him to keep in touch with events in his constituency so he would probably serve out his term, although no final decision has been taken."

How convenient. So it's Ok for him to continue as a councillor but not for Bob to keep on as a London Assembly member. Hmmmm. Interesting logic. No doubt they'll say that one involves more work than the other. But how then can they justify Sarah Ludford being in the House of Lords and at the same time being an MEP? I wonder sometimes how they look themselves in the mirror each morning.

15 comments:

Andrea said...

The funny thing with Abbotts is that I think his ward is not in Bromley and Chislehurst constituncy, so the being "in touch with events in his constituency " is a bit too much (even if he can claim that the activities of the council affect B%C constituency)

Ludord and the dual mandate....well, next time it won't be allowed anymore. So Ludford couldn't be re-elected as an MEP again.
Same thing for Emma Nicholson (who will be over retirement age next time anyway, so maybe less worrying for her)

Martin Hoscik said...

"But how then can they justify Sarah Ludford being in the House of Lords and at the same time being an MEP?"

More relevant are the two peers on the London Assembly, one of whom also serves as a Councillor.

I realise I'm a broken record on this issue but it's one I feel strongly about and which makes a mockery of the LibDem's attacks on Neill.

(BTW - I only just realised that you kindly link to my Spooks site!)

Betty said...

Well done, Ben, for finding the time to answer letters from the Tory Party in this busy election period. I don't suppose "Three Jobs" Bob would be nearly so helpful - he represents nearly 400,000 people on the GLA. He clearly has his hands full already.

Iain Dale said...

Betty, Oh dear. Own goal. The letter was from oneof his campaign staff. Not Ben.

Anonymous said...

400,000 people represented in a GLA seat... a few thousand max on a Council seat. SLIGHTLY different!

Croydonian said...

What a woeful lack of ambition - Andrew Pelling is MP for Croydon Central, AM for Croydon/Sutton and before the locals, a Croydon councillor too.

bebopper said...

Sorry, off topic I know, but did anyone hear that amazing interview with Chief Constable Terry Grange on The World Tonight? He's the child protection spokesman for the Chief Police Officers and accuses Reid and the Government of caving in to The News of The World on the question of revealing the names and addresses of paedaphiles "living near you".
The Government rejected this so-called "Sarah's Law" a couple of years ago. Quite right. It would lead to lynch mobs. (You can just see the tattoos, the shreiking harridans.)
So now, "Dr" Reid is sending an observer to America to see how it works over there. Apparently, it works a treat. Half a dozen sex offenders have been done in by concerned citizens.
The good "Doctor" is nobody's fool. He won't bring in Sarah's Law here, but as Terry Grange demonstrates, Reid is desperately sucking up to the News of The World and their vital readership.
This desperation is predictable , following The Sun's movement towards the Tories.

Cllr Nicholas Bennett said...

Andrea's right his ward (Clockhouse)is in Beckenham. As his modest election literature tells us "He's a popular hardworking councillor", though truth to tell he's only lived in the Borough 2 years and has only been on the council for 6 weeks.

The latest mystery is how young Ben has been struck dumb.

He turned up for a special council meeting called to ratify, at the last minute, the Unitary Development Plan for Bromley. The Tories have been fighting Prescott tooth and nail for over a year and have only agreed to bring in the Plan because otherwise Ken Livingstone's London Plan would be imposed on the borough.

Up to now the Lib Dems have voted with Labour that Prescott's diktat should be obeyed. Tonight all 7 including "Popular hardworking Bromley Councillor Ben" sat mute like a row of tailors' dummies. Not a peep from them nor a vote.

How long before the next Focus proclaims how they alone battled to save Bromley from the bulldozer?

kingbongo said...

How long before the next Focus proclaims how they alone battled to save Bromley from the bulldozer?

About 1 week

Anonymous said...

I am sure that Londoners would welcome the £250 000 bill to run a by-election across Bexley & Bromley if he did resign!

Paul Walter said...

"How Do These LibDems Keep a Straight Face?"

Reading this Diary helps

Niles said...

Oh, Iain, Iain. That headline is homophobic, pure and simple

Iain Dale said...

LOL.

Iain said...

I'm not quite sure what the problem is here or why Lib Dems should find it hard to keep a straight face.

GLA members get a salary not far short of that of an MP. Being an MP is surely also a full-time job. Holding two full-time jobs at taxpayers' expense is surely something that can legitimately be questioned.

Few ordinary councillors (especially opposition ones) get paid the equivalent of a full-time salary and most councillors are part-time and most councillors have other jobs.

The Conservatives are quite free to rebut the criticism, but it is hard to see what is outrageous about its being made in the first place.

For more on the morality of election leaflets, see latest post on my blog.

Iain said...

I'm not quite sure what the problem is here or why Lib Dems should find it hard to keep a straight face.

GLA members get a salary not far short of that of an MP. Being an MP is surely also a full-time job. Holding two full-time jobs at taxpayers' expense is surely something that can legitimately be questioned.

Few ordinary councillors (especially opposition ones) get paid the equivalent of a full-time salary and most councillors are part-time.

The Conservatives are quite free to rebut the criticism, but it is hard to see what is outrageous about its being made in the first place.

For more on the morality of election leaflets, see latest post on my blog.