So what has Ed Davey been up to today?

He has been building bug houses! Not as eye-catching as falling into water, but still a good ploy to talk about housing.

Over in The Guardian he is seen wearing a halo. Martin Kettle writes: “The Tories are fixating on Reform. They should be focused on a far bigger threat” – meaning the Lib Dems.

If wartime analogies are your thing, you could say that the Conservatives have a Singapore problem. Before the second world war, the British empire armed Singapore to fight naval battles against Japan. Famously, most of Singapore’s heavy artillery faced out to sea. But in 1942, the Japanese army overran Singapore from the rear, coming in from the Malayan mainland.

Today, the Tory high command and many supporters, especially in the media, look fixedly out to sea at the advance of Reform. As a result, they have all underestimated the threat from the Lib Dems at their rear. Even now, the Conservatives have not understood that Ed Davey is a far bigger danger to their majority than Nigel Farage.

Yesterday he met trainees who were making chilli jam at the Nickel Support community interest company in Carshalton, which works with adults with learning disabilities.  Interestingly different …

And the four main party leaders will be on a Question Time special this evening at 8pm.

 

* Mary Reid is a contributing editor on Lib Dem Voice. She was a councillor in Kingston upon Thames, where she is still very active with the local party, and is the Hon President of Kingston Lib Dems.

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13 Comments

  • David Langshaw 20th Jun '24 - 11:33pm

    Just to add to the Singapore imagery, it’s worth remembering that the Japanese advanced all the way down the Malayan peninsula on bicycles.

  • Christopher Haigh 21st Jun '24 - 2:25pm

    Ed came over really well on the TV question time debate last night. Very likeable personality.

  • Chris Moore 21st Jun '24 - 6:50pm

    He did particularly well on Coalition errors and his role in the PO scandal.

  • Peter Davies 21st Jun '24 - 8:15pm

    I thought Starmer came over very badly. When asked about his endorsement of Corbyn, he pretty much said it was OK to say something he didn’t mean because he knew they were going to lose. That’s worth bringing up every time he mentions 2010.

  • Peter Martin 22nd Jun '24 - 8:46am

    @ Peter Davies,

    “….{Starmer} pretty much said it was OK to say something he didn’t mean because he knew they were going to lose.”

    Absolutely true. Of course Starmer didn’t say he thought Labour would lose at the time. He can’t even answer the question of whether he wanted Labour to lose. If he didn’t want Labour to win what was he doing in secret behind the scenes?

    I’d just ask anyone to ask themselves if a tactical, second choice, vote for Labour is appropriate in this election when their leader is a self confessed li_r. He’s consistently approached every election, including the election for Labour leader, in the way a lawyer might approach a trial. It doesn’t really matter if they believe they might say to a jury providing that it produces the desired vote and result.

    Democracy can only work if we mean what we say and say what we mean. There’s no way of knowing which is the real Starmer. Is it the one who stood on a Macdonald’s picket line when he wanted to be Labour leader or is it the one who made standing on a picket line a disciplinary offence?

    A vote for Starmer’s Labour is a vote against democracy.

  • @PeterMartin.Yiu hit the mail on the head. The real question voters ought to be asking is whether a Starmer backing Labour MP is better than a Tory. My answer is yes, if the only alternative is a Tory. On balance, a very fine one indeed, a Labour MP would be marginally better than a Tory. Of course, wherever possible another choice should be made, ideally for a LibDem MP. I am a realist and apart from 90 + seats that’s a big ask. Galling for socialists like Peter Martin of course.

  • Starmer is a habitual lier. Shame the media don’t call it out. Like Johnson he’s getting an easy ride when it comes to the truth ..
    As for Corbyn – he’s got more integrity than both of them put together.
    This GE campaign has been underwhelming – no distinct vision, it’s all about not scaring voters off . What you end up with is mediocrity in abundance. MPs will be elected by default .

  • To give my perspective – I was a loyal Lib Dem for 25 years,, until Clegg sold out to the Tories, and the party repeatedly failed to recover after 2015. I thought I’d never vote Lib Dem again.

    This campaign has been far better than I had expected. Davey has successfully stood as a centre-left leader in the tradition of Ashdown and Kennedy, with a serious programme for national recovery. If I lived in the “blue wall”, I’d happily vote Lib Dem. But I don’t. I live in a “safe Tory” seat which could, for the first time since the sixties, go Labour.

    Starmer is a stodgy, slightly-right-of-centre, authoritarian politician. He has no vision. Like Scholz in Germany, he risks becoming paralysed by his lack of ambition. But what’s the alternative?

    Sunak fits well into the neocon mould of Meloni, Farage and Trump – Politicians who believe their own evil myths of Western triumphalism and denialism, who are wrecking the planet. They must be stopped. A vote for stodgy Starmer is a small price to pay to help achieve those ends.

  • Peter Martin 22nd Jun '24 - 12:13pm

    @ David Allen,

    ” Like Scholz in Germany, {Starmer} risks becoming paralysed by his lack of ambition. But what’s the alternative?”

    As this is a LibDem website, can I suggest, er, the Lib Dems? 🙂

  • Peter Martin 22nd Jun '24 - 12:13pm

    @ David Allen,

    ” Like Scholz in Germany, {Starmer} risks becoming paralysed by his lack of ambition. But what’s the alternative?”

    As this is a LibDem website, can I suggest, er, the LibDems? 🙂

  • ‘Sunak fits well into the neocon mould of Meloni, Farage and Trump – Politicians who believe their own evil myths of Western triumphalism and denialism, who are wrecking the planet’.. ..
    Strong stuff David ..Farage would put Johnson & Sunak down as wet liberals.
    What happens if Starmer fails to deliver .

  • Peter Martin 23rd Jun '24 - 9:02am

    ” ‘The Tories are fixating on Reform. They should be focused on a far bigger threat’ – meaning the Lib Dems.”

    It looks like Labour will win with a huge majority even though their vote share will be about the same as (could be less than) they obtained in 2017 under Jeremy Corbyn.

    This will largely be because the right wing vote has split between Tories and Reform. Lib Dems also will be the beneficiaries in terms of MP numbers even though the Lib Dem vote share won’t justify, on arguments used previously by Lib Dems themselves, such a large number.

    It won’t be because the Lib Dems have gained a huge number of previously right wing votes.

    So the Tories are probably right to fixate on Reform. Even so, there doesn’t look to be much they can do about it.

  • Ex-LD Leeds 23rd Jun '24 - 3:04pm

    I would be very surprised if the LIb Dems won more seats than they would get on a strictly proportional basis

    12% = 76 seats
    15% = 95 seats
    20% = 126 seats

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