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 AvatarLorenzo Cherin 2nd May - 2:14am
    We shall miss this man as a measured and attractive man and personality , a man of intelligence and good humour , and the best...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 2nd May - 1:47am
    Very positive this , deserves to translate in votes at the ballot box ! Willie and the Labour and Conservative Leaders are all correct on...
  • User AvatarCllr Mark Wright 2nd May - 12:27am
    Good stuff, thanks Caron. Down here the Scottish coverage has been overshadowed by Labour self-destructing, again. I'm actually not complaining, lol.
  • User AvatarJim H 1st May - 11:57pm
    Yeah, your party voted for the Health & Social Care act voluntarily. You can talk about civilising effects all you like, but if you were...
  • User AvatarAndrew Colman 1st May - 11:29pm
    Why has there been nothing about this in the BBC whilst the press and BBC have given non-stop coverage to Ken Livingstones' remarks about whether...
  • User AvatarDJ 1st May - 11:24pm
    After Sturgeon's fantastic (dare I say "Clegg like"?) performance at the leaders debates one pundit suggested she was coming over so well because David Cameron...