Conservatives climb down over boundary changes

I’d commented before on the oddity that was the Conservative Party’s insistence it would select candidates for the 2015 general election on the basis of the now still-born new constituencies, thereby gifting a significant campaigning advantage to other parties.

No more. The Conservatives have seen sense and, despite David Cameron’s talk of pressing ahead and hoping to win a vote to get the new boundaries in place, the party organisation has instead accepted reality and is selecting candidates on the existing boundaries.


* Mark Pack is Party President and Co-leader of the party. He is editor of Liberal Democrat Newswire.

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  • whilst I agree Mark with most of your post, The Boundary reforms were purely the Tories way of gerrymandering constituencies to favour themselves and hoping it would help them into winning a Majority.

    However, I did find your metaphor “on the basis of the now still-born new constituencies” a bit distasteful and maybe you could find another way of rephrasing. Just my opinion.

    I am glad that the Liberal Democrats put their foot down on this issue, Now I wish they would force Cameron to abandon the plans altogether in this parliament as it is wasting good time and money that could be put to good use elsewhere

  • Stuart Smith 16th Sep '12 - 2:19pm

    Should point out the the Boundary Commission for Scotland has just produced proposals for reducing the number of MPs elected from Scotland to Westminster, so the process hasn’t been stopped up here:

  • Peter Watson 16th Sep '12 - 5:56pm

    @Matt “The Boundary reforms were purely the Tories way of gerrymandering”
    Really? I’m sure our glorious Lib Dem leader told us it was all about making constituency sizes fair and parliament more cost-effective. What changed?

  • @Peter Watson

    To be honest I don’t really care why your glorious Libdem leader changed his mind, I am not a member of the Liberal Democrats.

    But the Tories plan all along was to push the less well off out of the expensive cities by lowering the LHA.

    Moving more and more families into deprived suburbs at the same time as reducing the size of constituencies.

    The probable effect would have meant that the Tories would be far more dominant in the south, south east/west. At the same time as reducing the size and number of MP’s in the North where Tories tend to do miserably anyway, giving them further advantages as they would have less constituencies to fight for where they normally do badly.

  • Paul McKeown 16th Sep '12 - 7:50pm

    Conservatives may be climbing down over constituency boundaries, but I see that they are determined to build a new generation of unabated gas power stations, if I have read the runes in the Sunday Telegraph’s article about Owen Paterson correctly (

    I have been broadly supportive of the LDs in their coalition with the Conservatives, albeit with gritted teeth on occasion, and with the wish that the LDs would push back a bit harder sometimes, and with a bit more gumption. The Conservative leadership is happy to concede small victories in order to win the bigger issues they hold more important, or so it has seemed to me. This is not an issue on which I, personally, could accept a defeat for the LDs.

    Electrical generation in the UK must be decarbonised by 2030, the technology exists, it’s merely a question of political will. A year or two either side makes little odds, but pushing it back to 2040 or 2050 is simply unacceptable.

    If George Osborne insists in pushing this agenda, then I would prefer Ed Balls in No. 11. Not an inch, bring down the government on a matter of principle if defeat is otherwise unavoidable. I would like to hear from a member something reassuring on this subject from Ed Davey. It had better be convincing, though.

  • “I’m sure our glorious Lib Dem leader told us it was all about making constituency sizes fair and parliament more cost-effective. What changed?”

    That was when he thought he was getting something in return for supporting it.

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