Eastleigh Labour PPC defects to Liberal Democrats‏

Daniel Clarke, Labour’s Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Eastleigh, has resigned from the party and joined the Liberal Democrats.

He cites “government policies which… are becoming increasingly indefensible” and says that “the likes of Damian McBride and Derek Draper have somehow been allowed to smear opponents and bring shame on the party”

From Labourhome:

I will leave the Labour Party and I am joining the Liberal Democrats. At the next election I will back Chris Huhne. Eastleigh is a two horse race, between Chris who has a proven record as a progressive politician and a hard worker for Eastleigh or Maria Hutchings, who – whatever her personal qualities – supports right wing reactionary policies on Europe, immigration and local issues.

I want to be a political activist who works for what is right. I have concluded that joining the Liberal Democrats will allow me to do this. Time and again, I have found myself thinking that Chris Huhne is right on issues as varied as Trident, Climate Change, the economy and civil liberties whilst the government is wrong on them.

Rather than standing against him, I will be voting for Chris at the next General Election.

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22 Comments

  • NorthernMonkey 26th Apr '09 - 7:46pm

    Believe me, you’re welcome to him.

  • Rabi Martins 26th Apr '09 - 8:40pm

    You win some – Daniel Clark from Labour to Liberal Democrats and you lose some – Norsheen Bhatti from Lib Dems to Tories -such are the ways of politics

    It would be dangerous to read too much into either defection

  • I will repeat what I said about Norsheen Bhatti –

    It is a common courtesy – in my view – to stand down from party office (e.g. ppc) before defecting.

    That view aside, welcome aboard!

  • After reading some of you comments on LabourHome in recent months this seems a jump by a career politician who knew he wouldn’t win rather than one on morals.

    Message for the LDems, make sure you don’t place him in a safe Tory seat or the print on his membership card will still be wet and he will jump again.

    Tell us again how there are not enough working class MP’s in Parliament,Dan…..What’s Chris Huhne again Dan?

  • What that J Jones? A careerist politician joined the Lib Dems to further his career? LOL! I guess the LDs should take that as a compliment! 😀

  • You are welcome to him – he would not have brought any credit to the Labour Party standing against a skilled (and widely admired) politican such as Huhne. I hope that Huhne strengthens his position in Eastleigh as a result of this.

    Clarke is nothing – he appears to have risen more through a lack of other people to stand than through talent or ability. He would have sank without a trace after failing to be elected.

  • Daniel is a friend-he is a hard working young man-who passionately cares for the
    Environmnent and local people. Chris Huhne and his team must be delighted.

    Best Wishes
    Sam Snook

  • Reading the comments on Labourhome, apart from the genarl unpleasantness, it rather struck me that not long ago Daniel Clarke would have been putting the boot into anyone who joined the Lib Dems. In my view, anyone joining a political party soon ends up spouting stuff due to “confirmation bias”.
    Thus Labour Home people view the Labour party as the best hope for a less unequal society – whereas Lib Dems would say the same thing. Leaving a party can be very liberating for people as you look at all the assumptions you made afresh.

  • Julian Ware-Lane 27th Apr '09 - 1:26pm

    The Lib Dem supporters may as well jump ship in Castle Point – their party is invisible there.

  • Julian,

    This is not a thread on Castle Point …

    confused of Cheshire

  • Pete Stewart 29th Apr '09 - 9:19am

    This is good for democracy. It will put further pressure on the Labour leadership to follow the Huhne initiative (i.e. a real referendum on our continued EU annexation). It will also further pressurize the Tories to do the same. REPEAT: This is good for democracy. Remember it is natural for a people to want to govern themselves. It is very UNNATURAL to want to be governed by European politicians. Ford is shifting jobs to Turkey solely because under the EU-Turkey customs union, it can use cheap Turkish labour and import vehicles tariff free. It’s time to leave the EU. Chris Huhne as a democrat will help ensure this happens. This is good for democracy.

  • Yet more antics from third-placed parliamentary candidates. The sooner the Lib Dems reduce their exposure to this happening to them instead, by not contesting seats where they are more distant than 8 points off second place, the better. This would also allow the wasted-vote argument to be combatted by an “if we’re on your ballot we can win” one.

  • Hugh – nonsense – so we don’t fight a seat like Ashfield where we have a good chance of winning this time and we are not able to develop potential new targets in future?

  • Or Hugh what about this seat?

    Here’s the result from 1997:

    Conservative: 11293 (21.9%)
    Labour: 31792 (61.7%)
    Liberal Democrat: 5794 (11.3%)
    Referendum: 808 (1.6%)
    Other: 1800 (3.5%)
    Majority: 20499 (39.8%)

    Can you guess the result in 2005?

  • David Morton 29th Apr '09 - 3:42pm

    1. Everywhere now has list PR ( the Euros)
    2. Scotland, Wales and London have two lots with devolved bodies as well.

    allowing your vote to evapourate in a chunk of seats by not contesting generals is insane. What about the council presence in those seats ? how do you know where the next By election is going to be ?

    How can you ask anyone to join the party in an area where they can’t vote for you in a general ?

    and thats before we get onto credibility with the press, RoPA “equal” airtime and the fact that we’d lose freepost delivery in a swathe of Britain. I’m sure activists in target seats would be *delighted* that they themselves couldn’t actually vote for the party if they lived in your kill zone.

    what a bizzarre idea.

  • he has jumped to the Tories now ha ha ha ha ha ha .

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