LibLink: Stephen Tall – I’m not seduced by Adonis

Over at The Guardian’s Comment Is Free website, LDV Co-Editor Stephen Tall has a pop at Labour’s Lord Adonis for begging for Lib Dem votes, aguing that left-liberal voters have been let down by both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown – so we’re scarcely inclined to prop them up now. Here’s an excerpt:

There is a respectable argument for tactical voting, given our clunking electoral system. And if Lord Adonis really wants to pursue his “don’t let the Tories in” scare tactic to its logical conclusion, it’s very clear what progressives should do in Lib Dem-Tory marginals: vote Lib Dem. And it’s just as clear what progressives should do in those seats where it’s a straight choice between Labour or the Lib Dems: vote Lib Dem. …

Liberal-left voters have been let down by Labour for 13 years. Those sticking with Labour can keep their pegs on their noses in the vain hope Labour will recover its progressive conscience. Better still, they could switch to the Lib Dems and make sure progressive politics has a true voice in the next Parliament.

You can read Stephen’s article in full here.

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This entry was posted in LibLink.


  • As a Liberal Party and subsequently Liberal Democrat member of 44 years standing; Stephen Tall’s comments do not come as a surprise. The concept of LibDem votes for sale is one which has been rehashed in varying forms since time immemorial.

    We are who we are as a result of our beliefs, not to be cajoled at the specious whim of those in power or seeking power whose assumption is “better the devil you know” rather than any real intent to bring about the realisation of things which we hold dear.

    The more we allow these people to sway us with the scent of power, the less likely are we to achieve it. If we want power, we should wrest it solely on the basis of our well made arguments, and there are many.

    These offers of some spectral power if we maintain them in actual power are made from fear. Fear of us and also the real fear that they are unable to fully convince with their own arguments.

    Believe me, I am not claiming any moral high ground by making these comments, but seeking to encourage our voters and potential voters to grasp the nettle. We and these new-found supporters may be impessed by our own substance. We know what we are talking about: yet those seeking to undermine our confidence and thus our self-respect have only that to offer.

  • Not so sure I buy this idea of the “left Liberal”. I thought Liberals were Liberals, end of.

  • Lord Adonis – that the man is a historian and a minister is quite scary.

    Take for exampel the rather absurd stement “this Labour Government that removed most of the hereditary peers from the House of Lords – a reform the Liberals failed to implement when they had the chance in 1911.”

    The Liberals never had the chance to do so in 1911, unlike say Labour in 1945 or 1997. Oh the irony of an unelected Lord moaning about the hereditary peerages ! At least Lord Adonis, unlike so many Labour Peers isn’t a major party donor.

    If Lord Adonis is so upset about the electoral system then perhaps he could explain why Labour failed to change it in the 13 years they had to do so since 1997? Blaming the Tories for killing of a half-herated death bed pledge to a possible referenudm on Alteranate vote (not even PR) utterleyy ignores the 13 years Labour had to do something.

    As for being “left wing” Labour long ago abandoned even a modest one nation Toryism, when it elected Blair as Leader,

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