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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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 30th Jun - 3:08am
    John, by "hard-headed" I mean "what wins sustainable votes". Regards
  • User AvatarMark Green 30th Jun - 2:07am
    I don't see that a single issue united anti-Tory party could possibly work for the reasons that Dal pointed out. And while I think formal...
  • User AvatarT-J 30th Jun - 2:07am
    There should be agreement between the parties to bring about electoral reform. Certainly, there should be a pact between the smaller parties not to enter...
  • User AvatarSammy O'Neill 30th Jun - 12:55am
    This idea is so unfeasible, it's ridiculous. If we optimistically assume the Tories didn't win, In the time it would take to amend the voting...
  • User AvatarStewart 30th Jun - 12:51am
    I'm not hugely inspired. The leaflets I've received are very telling: - Farron's has that cosy old school sandals and leather patches feel to it,...
  • User Avatarkevin 30th Jun - 12:38am
    Roger Lake What's the point of having one let alone two elections when any change in the voting system would need to pass a referendum...
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