When being called a Liberal Democrat is taken as an insult

LDV has mentioned previously the tendency of Gordon Brown to attempt (rather pathetically) to rile Liberal Democrats by referring to ‘the Liberal party’ at Prime Minister’s Questions. Well, up in Liverpool, the Liberal party is taking considerable offence at being referred to as Liberal Democrats, as the Liverpool Echo reports:

A CITY leader is at the centre of a standards investigation into claims he was rude to a charity set up to encourage black people into politics. Liberal group leader Cllr Steve Radford is alleged to have breached the members code of conduct in comments he made to Operation Black Vote staff.

The row broke out after Cllr Radford took offence at being addressed as a Liberal Democrat rather than a Liberal. It came to a head when he blasted the organisation’s “stupidity” in writing to him at the Lib Dem headquarters in Wavertree rather than Liberal HQ in Tuebrook.

Documents obtained by the ECHO reveal OBV then told Cllr Radford he was at times “neither decent or polite” and his rudeness “would not be tolerated”.

Cllr Radford had been offered the chance to apologise by the standards committee but said he was standing firm, adding: “If an organisation that’s supposed to encourage people to get involved in politics doesn’t know the difference between a Liberal and a Liberal Democrat, having been corrected twice, then it’s not for me to apologise.”

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  • Tony Greaves 20th Feb '09 - 9:04pm

    Fortunately we do not have any of these idiots in Pendle so we can use the terms Liberal Democrat and Liberal interchangeably. At least it stops silly members of the other parties calling us “Liberals” as some kind of wind-up.

    Tony Greaves

  • Steve Radford is a great local campaigner for Liverpool, and has done more than the resident Lib Dems for the local campaigns I’m involved with there.

    His hatred for the Liberal Democrats however is almost legendary, and it’s amazing to see him in full flow…

  • I do not see what Cllr Radford has to apologise for.

  • Colin – that’s even more astonishing considering Wolverhampton HAS HAD a Liberal (as opposed to LD) councillor in recent years.

  • A name change is in order. How about Radford’s Liberal Party calling itself the Liberal Conservative Party.

  • Matthew Huntbach 23rd Feb '09 - 10:04am

    Liberalism is not a political creed which believes in the primacy of political party, and therefore party names and boundaries should not be too important to us. This is in sharp distinction to many forms of socialism where “The Party” which must have some sort of apostolic succession which proves it is “The True Socialist Party” is an important issue.

    If someone feels the best way to promote their liberalism is to set up some very small party rather than work through a larger party with which they have some disagreement, that’s fine. If they then try to claim some arcane constitutional point to argue that they are the only true liberals that exists and no-one else is, then they are only proving they are not.

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