Author Archives: Philip Cowley and Mark Stuart

The Independent View: And then there was one… (Unmasked! The only backbench Lib Dem MP 100% loyal to the Coalition)

When a quarter of the parliamentary Conservative party rebels, everyone sits up and takes notice. On 24 October, 2011, 81 Conservative MPs defied a three-line whip to vote in favour of an EU referendum: cue a blaze of negative publicity for David Cameron and the Tory party whips.

But a week or so later one-quarter of Lib Dem MPs rebelled, and (almost) no one noticed. In nine separate votes on 1 and 2 November, a total of 14 Lib Dem MPs voted against various aspects of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill. The largest …

Posted in News, Parliament and The Independent View | Tagged , , , , , , and | 13 Comments

Opinion: the reality is a long way from equidistance

We are, said George Orwell, ‘a nation of flower-lovers, but also a nation of stamp-collectors, pigeon-fanciers, amateur carpenters, coupon-snippers, darts-players, crossword-puzzle fans’.  We think we can top that list.  We collect statistics on parliamentary voting behaviour.

And over the last decade we’ve noticed the remarkable change that has come over Lib Dem MPs.  Out of the 182 whipped votes in the last session of parliament, they voted with the Government on just 22 occasions.  Of the votes that occurred on the Second or Third Reading of Bills – what are effectively the votes on the overall principle of the bill – …

Posted in The Independent View | 22 Comments
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  • User Avatarjames 3rd Dec - 9:24pm
    I used to volunteer at a homeless project as a receptionist on `dry days`. The paid staff always said `don't give money`. So I'm confused!...
  • User AvatarSue Sutherland 3rd Dec - 8:45pm
    My husband (now retired) used to run the homeless hostel in Bath and many homeless people have told me how terrible it is to be...
  • User AvatarConor McGovern 3rd Dec - 8:03pm
    Really worthwhile article. Homelessness is not inevitable and should not occur in a rich country in the 21st century. It's an indictment of a failing...
  • User AvatarTony Greaves 3rd Dec - 7:29pm
    I enjoyed singing along to a small jazz combo on the District Line this week (Hit the Road, Jack; O When the Saints...; and two...
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 3rd Dec - 7:19pm
    Thank you very much, Catherine, I have been absorbing the statements of both Tim and our new MP from yesterday's joyfulness, and the key words...
  • User AvatarDavid Pearce 3rd Dec - 7:12pm
    William Ross, the analysis done by pollsters says that 90% of people who believed they would be better off financially with Remain or Leave, voted...