Infographic: the Lib Dem effect on the Coalition

Venn diagram of Lib Dem/Tory influence on Coalition policies

How much respective influence have the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives had on the Coalition Government’s policies?

Lib Dem blogger Duncan Stott has crunched the data from the Guardian’s Datablog:

“The most objective way of assessing the coalition at this early stage is the coalition agreement. An analysis of this text and the roots behind each policy would give the best description of how this government is formed.

Happily the Guardian have done exactly this analysis and provided it as a spreadsheet. It list each commitment and gives the party of origin behind it (as well as their view of whether it is on track to be delivered – something I have ignored for this post). I have taken this spreadsheet as Gospel, so any inaccuracies in it are down to the Guardian not me.

This spreadsheet gives the following results: of the 399 policies in the agreement, 174 are solely from the Conservatives, 91 are solely from the Lib Dems, 80 were policies of both parties, and 54 are of unknown origin.”

Read the full post – with diagrams!- on Duncan’s blog, Split Horizons, here.

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This entry was posted in News.


  • Mike(The Labour one) 29th Sep '10 - 5:54pm

    How about things that weren’t in the Lib Dem manifesto but the Lib Dems decided they actually agreed with after the election?

    If we knew what each party went into coalition talks arguing for then we’d know who won what. But we know from Simon Hughes that the Tories practically begged the Lib Dems to give them to cover to get rid of some policies and we know the Lib Dems secretly agreed with things they campaigned against. When we know for certain that neither manifesto was actually meant by the negotiating teams this kind of thing just doesn’t work.

    And it isn’t so much that the Lib Dems have *no* impact, it’s that you’ve easily stripped away the progressive elements of your manifesto and upheld the wrongheaded.

  • Colin Green 29th Sep '10 - 6:01pm

    The pie chart is more informative than the Venn diagram. Good chart though. It should make the Tory right spit some blood. 23% of policy is pure Lib Dem and another 20% shared. 44% is pure Tory and the remaining 14% came from neither manifesto. We seem to have done very well out of the coalition.

  • vince thurnell 29th Sep '10 - 6:28pm

    The full privatisation of Royal Mail was not in the Lib dem manifesto. The manifesto stated part privatisation. Theres a big difference between the two.

  • It isn’t full privatisation, and the ratio was decided based on facts and sound advice.

  • Mike(The Labour one) 29th Sep '10 - 7:15pm

    No, no, no, bad LDK. Do not take the condescending, ridiculous stance that your party can do whatever it likes because they uniquely base their policies on facts and sound advice. That’s just hubris and arrogance.

    Did you go to the polls saying “we’ll base our policy on facts but won’t say what that means we’ll do”? No. You went to the polls as did every other party saying “we’ll base out policy on facts and this is what we think the facts point to. Vote for us if you agree.”

  • Anthony Aloysius St 29th Sep '10 - 7:47pm

    “It isn’t full privatisation, and the ratio was decided based on facts and sound advice.”

    It is indeed a full privatisation:
    We are not proposing to keep a government stake. Royal Mail will become privately owned and there will be a share for the workers within that company,” Cable told BBC Radio 4’s PM.

    Thanks so much for the reassurance about the “ratio” being decided “based on facts and sound advice.” That’s all right then. It’s just a bit of a shame that the figure that the party campaigned on and the electorate had a chance to vote on was completely different. What was that based on? Fantasy and faulty advice?

  • Andrew Suffield 29th Sep '10 - 7:57pm

    This sort of thing wont help Liberal Democrats at the next election when people are voting against the Government. As they will.

    Well yes, there is a significant chunk of voters who simply vote against the current government each time, no matter who that is, and it tends to grow larger the longer the current government has been in power. But you can’t really do much about that. It’s just something you have to accept when you get into government: that someday you won’t be the government any more.

  • Patrick Smith 29th Sep '10 - 8:59pm

    The 91 L/D led `Coalition Government’ policies is a good starting point..

    The fact remains that there has been massive local closures of post office branches that traditionally have been as one of the most vital community assets.Post Office Ltd and Royal Mail and Parcel Force have all been under severe loss making pressure to survive and are dependent on Governmnent subsidy.

    Local Post Offices should be maintained and supported by Councils as 59% of CAB users have stated that post offices are `Centres of the community’.

    A poll taken by Age Concern tells us that 99% of the elderly regard the local post office as a `life-line’ and Postwatch Scotland has said that 86% would stand to lose their independence if their local branch was closed.

    Also local small businesses assert that `each post office saves small businesses in their direct vicinity in the region of £270,000 each year’.

    The Hopper Report also recommends the takeover of the £8Billion pension asset by Government and more dialogue with the workforce in the build up to decision on the new post office business model.

    I would vote to maintain the Royal Mail as being sacrosanct but the degree of `privatisation’ is the critical question to get right.

  • There was a commitment from Cable for no more mass post office closures – but the Post Office is obv. very different from Royal Mail – which will be privatised, but significantly not the Tory way, but in a significantly employee led mutual way.

  • Anthony Aloysius St 29th Sep '10 - 11:25pm

    “the Post Office is obv. very different from Royal Mail – which will be privatised, but significantly not the Tory way, but in a significantly employee led mutual way.”

    The Lib Dem policy was for only 49% to be privatised. The remainder was to be retained by the government and an employee trust.

    The coalition government’s policy is for the government to retain no stake at all, and for employees – not an employee trust – to be offered “at least 10% of the business’s shares,” the terms of this offer not having been explained, as far as I’ve seen.

    How that amounts to “a significantly employee led mutual way” is beyond me. It is clearly nothing like the Lib Dem policy of a majority holding remaining in the hands of the government and an employee trust.

  • John Fraser 30th Sep '10 - 8:15am

    Please can Lib dems (of which i am one ) stop pretending :-
    1) That our policy was to privatise the Royal mail. That policy was rejected by conference another which kept the majority in public or workers hands was subsequently passed. please dont state otherwise it makes the party look more disengenous and misleading . it does us no good.

    2) What current propsals do NOT privatise the royal mail . Most dogma led conservative privatisations allowed workers to but shares at discounts etc. The current proposals seem little different to these. The fact that Vince or Nick is not fighting for something closer to our policy baring in mind it was a ‘compromise’ has quite frenkly shocked me to the core and says nothing for our party democracy.

    What ever you think of my opinions guys PLEASE stop reinventing history.

  • @Anthony Aloysius St – Yes, I know what the policy was, there was a part compromise on this. But ‘significant’ is what I am reading it as, and as for the mutuality – well the employee trust will behave just like that. But @John Fraser is correct – it is not Lib Dem policy, I was merely defending this as somewhere between LD and Con policy…

  • Anthony Aloysius St 30th Sep '10 - 12:49pm

    “But ‘significant’ is what I am reading it as, and as for the mutuality – well the employee trust will behave just like that.”

    What makes you think that the idea of an employee trust has been retained?

    As I wrote above, the coverage I have seen simply speaks of shares being offered to employees, not an employee trust.

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