Reasons to doubt Zac Goldsmith will be re-elected

So we have the first by-election test in London for the Prime Minister who wants a country that works for everyone. How does Zac Goldsmith stack up against this mantra (even if not the official Tory candidate)?

Firstly he voted to cut disability benefits by £30 a week, resulting in him being dumped by a local disabled charity.

Secondly he has never railed against the lack of affordable housing in his own area as Richmond Council allows more and more luxury flats to be built in a form of Bosnian style ethic cleansing as his friend Boris described the London housing crisis. He also supported the sale of precious social housing stock.

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Brexit is a war already lost

Is she or isn’t she? Since her accession, the public has been puzzled by Theresa May’s stance on Brexit. Was her lukewarm support for Remain merely self-preservation, just wanting to keep out of the fray? Was she a closet Leaver? Well now we know. The Guardian suggests that she is indeed a Remainer, but not just any old Remainer, but a Tory Remainer and so quite happy to switch sides. Paddy Ashdown summed it up in this Tweet.

But what does this tell us about the Tory mind? Well it tells me that the Conservatives are a party unencumbered by the constraints of values and principles, a party where politics is merely a game to be won or lost. Not for the Tory are there any of the questions of morality or conscience that exercise the minds of other parties. The Tory has become Nietzsche’s Übermensch, the self-mastered individual contemptuous of namby-pamby liberalism.

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Plaque to commemorate cycling councillor at new railway station

Here’s a lovely story from the Bromsgrove Advertiser:

A renowned campaigner for cyclists who died in 2007 will live on in a commemorative plaque to be unveiled at Bromsgrove railway station, marking a new facility that would have been close to his heart.

Gordon Selway, described as a “larger-than-life” character and who was also a Bromsgrove district councillor, was transport spokesman for the Worcestershire branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and volunteered for many charities.

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In the mayoral election, why did Zac Goldsmith get such a low vote in his own backyard?

Zac Goldsmith’s bid to become London mayor was memorably described as a “dog whistle campaign in a city with no dogs.” And few places in the capital demonstrate that better than Richmond Park itself.

As the local MP you would have thought his personal vote would make it a walkover. First preference mayoral votes, a good indicator of popularity, in Richmond Park shows that Boris Johnson won his second term in 2012 by a greater share in all but one of the constituency’s eleven wards compared to Zac in 2016.

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Tim Gordon writes….Reminder that nominations close for party internal elections on 2 November

From one by-election we run straight into another, with Richmond Park getting off the ground as a result of the Government’s decision on Heathrow expansion. It is absolutely vital that we all contribute to the campaign as early as we possibly can to keep up the momentum from Witney.

In the midst of the excitement for a second by-election in a matter of weeks you may however have missed that the deadline for nominations for internal elections to our Party’s Committees is fast approaching. Nominations close on Wednesday 2 November at 12 noon.

As a reminder there are four committees up for election: the Federal Board, the Federal Conference Committee, the Federal Policy Committee and the Federal International Relations Committee. In addition, a number of spaces are available for members to represent the party within our Delegation to the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe (ALDE). The position of Party President is also up for election this year. 

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May is ‘blithely ignoring her own dire warnings” about hard Brexit – Tim Farron

Revelations that Theresa May secretly warned about the economic effects of Brexit produced this sharp reaction from Tim Farron.

It is disappointing that Theresa May lacked the political courage to warn the British public as she did a group of bankers in private about the devastating economic effects of Brexit.

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It beggars belief that Brexit has escaped basic parliamentary democracy

I thought that in the UK, we had a parliamentary democracy. We elect representatives to tackle, understand, debate and ultimately enact legislation in order to build a cohesive, fair and prosperous society.

OK, our politicians have seen fit on a few occasions, to gauge the mood of the country and seek ‘advice’ from the electorate on a singular matter of importance, via a referendum. Surely, under these circumstances, that received advice should then be subject to the normal process of parliamentary understanding , debate and action as parliament sees fit. In this way the factors of cohesion, fairness and prosperity are woven into our democratic process.

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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarRoland 27th Oct - 3:18pm
    As Philip Hammond reveals, when it comes to border control there will be no restrictions on the ‘highly paid and highly skilled’. Only the riff...
  • User AvatarPaul Hunt 27th Oct - 3:14pm
    Fifthly, he has received an official endorsement from Farage/UKIP. That really helps to move the election onto the Brexit debate. Is Goldsmith (and can we...
  • User AvatarPhil Aisthorpe 27th Oct - 3:02pm
    Malc, I am expanding the point that politicians are increasingly displaying a high level of cynicism, that they are flexible in their policy making if...
  • User AvatarRoland 27th Oct - 3:02pm
    Allan Brame - Re: PR I think you have grasped the issue, namely, ask the right question. PR like all other voting systems will fail...
  • User AvatarMartin 27th Oct - 3:02pm
    Kim is right. The decision to jump (jump, jump, jump. I dare you!) has been proclaimed, but actually doing it is another matter. Or more...
  • User AvatarThe Professor 27th Oct - 2:34pm
    @Ian Rather sloppily worded IMHO. Elected representative who resign to force a by-election are by definition no longer elected representatives. The wording is "...MP who...