Friday, 30 April 2010

Guardian editorial backs Lib Dems

Guardian backs Lib Dems

General election 2010: The liberal moment has come

If the Guardian had a vote it would be cast enthusiastically for the Liberal Democrats. But under our discredited electoral system some people may – hopefully for the last time – be forced to vote tactically

A better model-the advanced swingometer?

I guess many of you have found your way to the US polling site with the more sophisticated seat allocator. This website has a good track record and got almost all the states in the US presidential election right. It is well worth looking at. They explain their model:

'Our model is considerably more aggressive than almost any other in forecasting Conservative and Liberal Democrat pickups from Labour. However the science of UK electoral forecasting is not terribly advanced. The standard method, the called the uniform swing (the idea that the vote shifts by the same margin everywhere in the country), has failed badly in past elections like 1997 in which there was a dramatic shift in voting intentions from one party to another, and may face additional strains in a three-way race like this one. That's not to say that we've necessarily gotten everything right. Perhaps we'll even be quite wrong. But there also ought to be no particular benefit of the doubt given to uniform swing, whose only apparent virtue appears to be in its simplicity. Indeed, if you look at where people are putting their money, the betting markets are a lot closer to our model than to uniform swing in predicting a shift of seats away from Labour. In fact, the markets are even more aggressive than our model about anticipating a shift from Labour to Conservatives, although we see somewhat better things in store for Liberal Democrats.'

The prediction is is going with post last nights debate is 538 above, the site explains:
In conjunction with Renard Sexton and Daniel Berman, I have made several further improvements to our UK General Election forecasting model. However, it still bodes quite bad news for the Labour party; we now show them holding on to only about 200 seats in the House of Commons, versus roughly 300 for the Conseratives and 120 for the Liberal Democrats.

I'm not statistician but I was struck by the Angus Reid poll last night that showed Clegg hoovering up the undecided who appear to be Labour switchers!

What if Paddy had been in a Leaders' debate in 1992?

I was idly wondering what the impact of Leaders' debates would have been in 1992. I suspect that Major would have suffered as Brown has done and Paddy scored as Clegg has.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

The Sun isn't going to win it this time

It is interesting that some vested interests are getting very nervous that events have got out of control. What ever the headlines in the Murdoch press after polling day I doubt they will read 'It's the *** that won it'. I've no doubt that the Murdoch empire will not approve of the closing tax loop holes for the very wealthy or a government engaging constructively with Europe. I see that Craig Murray is also having his own tussle.

Things I've muttered out of hearing........

I too am a repentant sinner. I have encountered voters over the years who have annoyed me. I would wish to apologise to them. I remember fighting my first General Election in 1979 in Warrington. I had a series of early morning phone calls from anti abortionists asking what it was like to be a baby killer. Fortunately I was not wired for sound when I put the phone down.

I have been angrily accosted in the street by people who disagreed with Paddy's policy of honouring our obligations to Hong Kong residents after the hand over to China.

On the door step in this election I have been harangued about immigration without having even opened my mouth. Sometimes the next thing out of their mouths is a torrent of openly racists abuse. It doesn't happen very often but when it does the raw naked aggression is quite frightening. I have taken to adopting the strategy that Michael Meadowcroft employed and simply telly such people not to vote for me. And so it is that I even have some sympathy for Brown. I have felt myself tightening when someone raises immigration as an issue fearing that it will develop into an offensive tirade. Brown's error was to anticipate that Mrs Duffy was going to do just that rather than wait and listen to what she had to say. I have observed that in this election the point that has been raised with me is not racists but a disbelief that people travel half way across a continent to take up work in Britain whilst we have so many unemployed people. It is alot more complicated that, often such people are admiring of the 'immigrants' hard work and enterprise. I met such a man last night in Ainsdale. He had been in the merchant navy and travelled the world. He knew that there was free movement of labour and that it was desirable. Nevertheless he was contemptuous that after 13 years of Labour government they had not anticipated labour shortages in key parts of the economy and filled that skill gap by training people.

Welcome back David Marquand

Welcome back David Marquand. The letter in today's Guardian has rightly been the cause of much comment. This may be a key moment when progressives/the left or what ever you want to call them decide that the Liberal democrats are the best vehicle for reform. As they say:

The MPs that assemble in Westminster next month could usher in one of the great reforming parliaments in British history, one to rank in the history books alongside 1831-32, 1865-67 or 1911-1914. The next parliament could see cherished progressive liberal aspirations realised: a proportional electoral system; wider and better-defended civil liberties; a new, internationalist approach to foreign affairs and immigration; reform of the tax system to share wealth and curb carbon emissions; and an assault on the vested interests of the financial sector.

The question for progressive liberals is what election result now offers the best chance of achieving these goals. Certainly not a Conservative majority. Despite some welcome commitments in areas such as civil liberties and localism, the Tories remain instinctively opposed to the deep democratic reforms the country needs.

Amongst the signatures is that of David Marquand. He was for many years the herald of the Prince across the water-the mouthpiece for Roy Jenkins when he was in Europe. Like many Liberals of the time I was more impressed with him than with some of the other Labour defectors. He struck me then a genuine constitutional radical. I met him first before the Gang of Four left the Labour Party along with Viv Bingham and Michael Steed in Manchester. An article he had written alerted many of us that hear we were dealing with someone open to fresh ideas and whose basic political instincts matched our own. He was not like so many of the dead beat failed Labour right wingers we encountered later on in the SDP who had little in common with us.

I fear that he may have not been as impressed with us as we were with him. I recall him turning up to one of the Radical Conferences that Liberator sponsored and squatting on the floor at the back of the hall. The truth of it was that many of us were frightened. We had worked long and hard to win local success and to make the Liberal Party credible. We were ignored or sneered at by the media when along came all these folk who the metropolitan in crowd knew and all of a sudden third party politics were fashionable. Many of the people we met were great, they became and remain our friends but there were too many 'conservative' old Labour hack who were as oppossed to radical change in the constitution as were Conservatives. That Saturday afternoon we must have sounded as tribal as the old Labour Party Marquand had left.

In 2008 he produced a major book on the history of the British Democracy and a series of article which showed that he was someone we should want to do business with, it is good that he is back

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Postal knocking up

I've been doing a stint of knocking up postal votes and very rewarding it has been. The conventional wisdom is that people who bother to register to get PVs are going to vote. It is true the turn out is much higher than non PVs  but as more and more folk register the turn out will slip. Anyway there is always someone who rings up after the polls have closed to say that they have forgotten to send their vote back.

I have found a great deal of enthusiasm for voting with people freely telling me that they have supported us-and that included people who we had previously canvassed as 'soft con'. That pattern was repeated again this evening when I was out in Ainsdale and got a really warm reception.

What on earth was Brown doing in Rochdale anyway?

Of all the cock ups in this election one of the most amazing is why did Gordon Brown bother to go to Rochdale anyway. It is on a par with Cameron saying; 'yes, Nick Clegg must be in the televised debates.'
Do the Labour Party seriously think they are going to prize Rochdale out of Paul Rowan's possession? Paul is, as it were, hewn from the same millstone grit that forms the Pennine Hills that surround the town. He has been an excellent MP and one who was destined to increase his majority before Brown abused the residents. It does make you wonder if the Labour Party have knocked on any doors or spoken to any real people.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Campaign song competition

We have carried postings on campaign songs from the past in Southport as well as The Land Song. One of our longest serving friends and supporters,Bernie Blaney, who helped us produce the first Birkdale Bulletin back in 1981(before we changed the name to FOCUS)  has suggested  Beatles’ songs for the election

Labour:        Dear Prudence
                   Don’t let me down
                   Every little thing
                   Get Back
                   I’ll be back
                   I’m down
                    I Should have known better
                   Oh! Darling
Cons:            Ask me why
                   Baby you’re a rich man
Bad to me
I don’t want to spoil the party
I’m looking through you
It’s all too much
Like dreamers do
Nobody I know
Not a second time
Run for your life
Tell me why
This boy
LibDems:      All together now
                   All you need is love
                   Come together
                   Getting better
                   Got to get you into my life
                   Here, there and everywhere
                   I’ll keep you satisfied
I want to hold your hand
I want you
I will
Step inside love
Think for yourself
We can work it out
With a little help from my friends
You never give me your money
BNP/UKIP   For no one
                   Hello goodbye
                   I’ll get you
                   I’m a loser
                   Love me do
                   Nowhere man
                   The end
                   A world without love
                   You won’t see me

General:       Tomorrow never knows

Bonus:          Won’t get fooled again – The Who
There might be others!

Monday, 26 April 2010

get back on message, stop talking about hung parliaments

Earlier this morning I added a comment on Lib Dem Voice that people should not get sucked into the whirlpool of fantasy coalition building. I did so because I am haunted by the General Election when Paddy, Kinnock and Major got drawn into this debate to our detriment.

I remember it well. I remember the hype. I remember the endless TV and radio on discussions on hung parliaments and voting systems. I remember the feeling that this time it might happen. I was contesting Congleton.
The media had picked up on us as a possible surprise. Edward Pearce was doing a book called 'Election Rides' that had a chapter on our campaign. The Guardian had an article on the Saturday before polling implying we might win. Old friends got in touch. Most exciting of all Jo Grimond turned up-unplanned and by mistake and did a public meeting (possible his last election outing). Then it all faded away rather like one of those old Amstrad computers being unplugged and you see the printing on the screen slowly disappearing as it dawns on you that you've not saved the document.  Let us not make the same mistake again

There are four key messages: fair taxes, a bold education plan to give all children a real chance, cleaning up the political system and implementing Dr Cable's economic plan with new 'green' jobs. So if some third rate journalist obsessed with hung parliament asks the question tell them a vote for the Lib Dems is about fair taxes, a bold education plan to give all children a real chance, cleaning up the political system and implementing Dr Cable's economic plan with new 'green' jobs. Even if the poor wretch can't cope with the idea that politics may be changing keep repeating the message. If necessary rig up a little contraption so you get an electric shock every time someone asks about a hung parliament.

Later in the day Stephen Tall (a man from Sefton who admitted voting Labour once in one of our target wards) wrote a much more considered posting

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Southport Triumph

Even the BBC website has reported Southport's triumph yesterday you can even hear an interview with manager Liam Watson. BBC radio Merseyside were promising an interview with Haydn Preece somewhere around 5.15pm yesterday-which I missed and is not yet on iPlayer.
So Southport are back in the Conference one stop short of the football league after their win against Eastwood yesterday. The only thing I know about Eastwood is that it is where D H Lawrence came from. I've already met several people this morning who spent yesterday afternoon with their computers following the Visiter's live coverage. It would be interesting to see how many people went to their website-perhaps they'll release the figures. 
Congratulations to all concerned 

Good news for Southport

I was out canvassing in Stamford Road this evening. Along the way we met several Southport FC supporters. We have all been waiting for the outcome of the appeal launched by Fleetwood FC against the scrubbing of the points gained against Farsley Celtic who have now folded and withdrawn from the league. At about 6.30pm I came across a supporter who was able to put us out of our misery-the FA had turned down the appeal. All Southport have to do tomorrow is to win at Eastwood to be champions. No pressure then lads.

It is amazing that it has taken days for the FA to make up their minds. You cannot help thinking that if this had been the Dog and Duck League this would have been sorted in a few moments.

The Visiter has the full story 

Pckles tells us he likes a free press, oh really

Take  a look

Cameron turns his back on Sefton

There have been lots of shocks in this General Election but I was rocked by Cameron's interview with Paxman. He directly threatened the public sector jobs that are concentrated in our borough. If I was a betting person I would be placing a wager on Richard Clein the Lib Dem candidate in Sefton Central. There is a very high level of public sector jobs there and if Cameron is going to target such places for cutbacks I wouldn't fancy being the Tory candidate.

Friday, 23 April 2010

Since Clegg has been held responsible for every known evil......

Since Clegg has been held responsible for every known evil our Tories appear to have followed the lead of the Daily Mail-never mind the truth go for the smear. I wake this morning to discover I am responsible for the digging of a hole in Upper Aughton Rd by United Utilities (UU)! I have no power to direct UU to dig holes.  A minor matter in comparison to the rubbish that the right wing Tory supporting media has flung at Clegg (after the editors were called in and briefed by the Tory high command) but a straw in the wind.

My view remains that going negative is wrong in principle and counter productive in practice. The electors don't like it and can see through it.

Robinson the Great-a hero for our time ?

I missed this yesterday in the Guardian-an editorial about a comic political novel written by a former Liberal Party President written on the eve of the 1929 General Election. That was an election when the Liberals fighting under Lloyd George and his Yellow Book manifesto won the debate and lost the election.

The President was Ramsey Muir an academic based in the NW at Liverpool and Mnchester universities. His 'hero' Robinson was a the Clegg of his times. As the Guardian editorial writes:

Published in 1929, it describes an election ending in a hung parliament in which neither Labour nor Tories can form a majority. Behind them in seats, but not so very far, are the Liberals. Step forward their leader: Robinson the Great. An ideal of what Nick Clegg could become in his finest dreams, Robinson forms a minority government, accepting defeat on day-to-day business but promising to resign only on a vote of no confidence. His bigger rivals dislike one another so cordially that they can never agree to combine and bring him down. Meanwhile, the Commons gradually loses its yah-boo adversarial nature because of the triangular nature of its debates. Measures are increasingly discussed on their merits, rather than point-scoring.

So a hung parliament doesn't mean Gordon has to be Prime Minister.

One reason why Labour is not fit to govern

I have mentioned before that John Pugh MP (at the time) rated Robin Cook's resignation speach as the best parliamentary performance he has witnessed. I noticed it at the foot of a posting on Tom King's blog and thought it worth reproducing

It's good to be a Lib dem today.......

Begging letter from William Hague

I really enjoyed this one. Having squandered the millions that his tax avoiding mate Ashcroft has given to the Tories -to no discernible effect- Hague is emailing his supposed poorer friends to ask them for cash. He pleads:

..............I want to ask you today if you can give just one pound a day to our campaign until we get to polling day.If you give now, you'll be giving just £14. We're not bankrolled by union barons, so small online donations like this from people like you are crucial to our campaign.

Ashcroft said no then?

I will be posting later on about how badly the Tories have spent the cash is this neck of the woods. I would suggest that any performance management system would show such poor outcomes  that it would be folly to invest in failure.

Roll on funding reform of political parties!

Feeble attacks and reprehensible smears

My colleague Richard Hands clearly had problems sleeping last night as he had scan the morning newspapers before I'd finished my first cup of tea. He was most delighted that the smears against Clegg had been effectively refuted-even if the were no front page banner headlines apologising. He was most taken with the editorial in the Independent:

Leading article: Feeble attacks and reprehensible smears

Friday, 23 April 2010

The vested interests of British politics are fighting back. The Liberal Democrats' remarkable surge in the opinion polls has provoked a deluge of attacks and smears on the party from those who would like to preserve the traditional two-party status quo.
The Conservatives unleashed their business spokesman, Ken Clarke, this week to issue dire (and unconvincing) threats about the disaster that would befall Britain's economy if the election resulted in a hung parliament. But that was mild compared to the abuse that some of the Tory party's friends in the press have heaped on the Liberal Democrats in recent days.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Looking forward to front page apology in Torygraph-well probably not......


Update 1939: I now learn that political reporters from the Tory-backing papers were called in one by one to discuss how Team Cameron would deal with "Cleggmania" and to be offered Tory HQ's favourite titbits about the Lib Dems - much of which appears in today's papers.
The key personal allegation about payments from donors into Nick Clegg's personal
bank account came, however, from the Telegraph's expenses files. Incidentally, the party has now published details of Nick Clegg's bank statements and party accounts showing that Mr Clegg received payments totalling £19,690 from three businessmen (Neil Sherlock, Michael Young, Ian Wright) and then paid staff costs of £20,437.30 out of the same account. According to these figures, Mr Clegg actually paid £747.30 out of his own money towards staff costs.

a new phenomenon?

First I should acknowledge that I copied this tabloid montage from political betting an secondly I should also acknowledge the following article from Tory blogger Iain Dale:

These Shameful Attacks on Clegg Will Backfire

Iain Dale 12:01 AM

What a terrible indictment of the British press we see this morning. The Mail runs a spurious story about Nick Clegg making a supposed Nazi slur against Britain. The Express reckons he wants us to be overrun by immigrants. The Telegraph accuses him, of well, properly declaring donations made to him to employ a member of staff. I haven't seen The Sun yet, but judging by their tirades against him over the last few days, he will probably be accused of fathering Kerry Katona's latest child and then paying her to get rid of it.

What a disgrace. And they say blogs are biased. On Sunday 
I wrote...
Personal attacks on Nick Clegg will not work. They will backfire on those who make them and rightly so. Everyone who knows Nick Clegg likes him. He's a transparently likeable individual. Anyone trying to make out that he's anything else will come a cropper.

It is well worth reading the full article and the comments that are attached to it.

I was out canvassing again last night and had an extremely good response. I was in Ainsdale (where our Tory candidate is a councillor) I was surprised that so few people mentioned her. At one door I spoke with a thoughtful lady who had watched the debates. If I had canvassed her before the debates I guess she would have gone down as a 'soft Tory'. She acknowledged the work that the Tory lady had done locally but said that she thought she wouldn't be suited to Westminster. It was clear to me that we had come across a new phenomenon; someone who votes Lib Dem nationally and Conservative locally (it is often the other way around in most of Southport). The final bit of the conversation was about the local elections. I though she might be voting Tory, but no, she had neither seen or heard of the Tory candidate and would support our man. So it seems that the ties of political allegiance have been broken............

I popped into our local butcher on the way out this morning and the conversation turned quickly to the election. 'Your guy's doing well in the media' I was told. followed up by someone else saying 'It would be good to have a change from the 'old parties'.

What is interesting here is that the thing about Nick doing well in the media was said in full knowledge of today's headlines and that the second comment used Nick's phrase about the 'old parties'.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Nick Clegg and John obscure the classic resort poster

Now I'm the last person to criticize other people's photographs. There are some ghastly ones of me about with all manner of foliage seemingly growing out of my head!. I like this photo of Nick and John; firstly they are smiling quiet naturally and secondly they are clearly talking to each other. These are two things that are not always true of candidate photographs. The lady on their left is Pat Sumner who feature in one of our earlier 'unsung heroine' postings. My only 'picky' criticism is that John's head is obscuring the 'Southport-the classic resort' poster. If my ward colleague Simon Shaw was taking the photo he would have insisted that they  did it again  so that the poster was in full view. For my part I think the naturalness of the picture trumps perfect positioning

Eric Redrobe

Many of us trooped off to Haig Ave (well there were about 2000 in the crowd) to see Southport play their  penultimate game of the season against Alfreton. I shall not dwell on the game. Southport can still win the league if they do better than Fleetwood in their final game.

After the game we were invited for a drink and had the pleasure of meeting the great Southport striker Eric Redrobe. I had seen him outside Haig Ave the other week signing an autograph for a youngster. Eric was voted by Southport fans their greatest player. He played back in the 1960's.

Last night we were talking with him about his FA Cup appearance at Haig Ave in front of 17 000+  when Everton won one nil.  He freely admitted that today a referee would not allow a striker to confront a goalkeeper in they way he did that day. You can read more about Eric and the Everton match here

A real laxative for the political system.............

Despite the truly appalling Party Political broadcast from UKIP  that Lib Dem Voice features today  the party is very attractive to a certain type of voter. Many in the Tory party would agree with them far more than they do with their own party and its contorted and unconvincing attempts to describe itself as 'liberal'.

I say this in the context of a little outburst on Iain Dale's diary in which he lays in to those in the Tory ranks who are beginning to argue that this would be a good election to loose. He suggests that electoral reform would-as Roy Jenkin's always argued-allow a progressive alliance to be formed and exclude the Conservatives from power for the foreseeable future. 

Let us leave aside the discussion of just how progressive Labour are with their opposition to political reform, fair taxes and support for cold war nuclear weapons-Dale should be more aware of the impact of STV on the very structure of the Tories. I wonder just how many would dessert to UKIP if the voting system did not discriminate against them so heavily. It would not just be that the centre right would be out of power, they would be hard pressed to hold the existing party together. The vast ideological differences within the party that so stymied John Major would come alive again. I'm not sure the 'centre' would hold.

And as for the Labour party-the sight of their activists faces as their leader slag off Lib Dems for proposing that we axe Trident!

Adrian Slade's campaign song for 'Dave'

I not worked out how you embed this delightful video. Liberals of my generation remember Adrian Slade-the Liberal member for Richmond on the old GLC. He entertained us magnificently at the Glee club year after year with his original witty ditties. I still have an old cassette tape of his 'greatest hits' which I must get on to the computer.
I think it must be at least a decade since I last heard Adrian perform live but it is great news that he has released a new song for the election . Enjoy

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

The times, they are a changin..............

Earlier today I was lamenting the failure of the Tories to take on board the changed political landscape. We may well be seing the end of FPTP elections and coalitions and minority governemnts could become the order of the day. I've now come across a second right winger trying to reconciole himself to the new situation.
I particularly enjoyed his reaction to Iain Dale's assertion that somehow multi party government is intrinsincly evil and un-British:

You English, sometimes you are the crazy people. Here's Iain Dale for instance, dismissing any notion of a Tory-Liberal arrangement:

All coalitions end in failure, the partners don't agree, postponement and indecision become the order of the day. Britain today does not need a two-headed donkey.

This, as anyone with any knowledge of politics anywhere else could tell you, is piffle. It's not even true of British politics. Few people would argue that the Labour-Liberal coalition at Holyrood was one of democracy's grander moments but it wasn't obviously worse than, say, a majority Labour ministry might have been and it was, in fact, all too stable and all too able to get things done. Not good things, you understand but definitely things anyway.
The times they are a changing

Tories slow to face up to new political situation...again

I know I'm a bit late in commenting on this item but stay with me. Right wing blogger Guido Fawkes did an posting the other day 'Coalition for Change'. It is well worth reading. It is only example I've come across of the Right facing up to the the new political situation. By and large the Tory line has continued to be 'give us a majority' -blissfully unaware that if they form a government with the support of only 1 in 5 electors they will not have a mandate for painful  financial and fiscal reform. Such an outcome would lead to Greek style unrest. There are signs that the Labour High Command is contemplating adapting to meet the circumstances.

The Fawkes article is of interest for a second reason, When he lists those who he imagines will hold high office in his Coalition for Change do note how many Lib Dems front benchers he mentions by name-Nick Clegg,Vince Cable, Ed Davey, David Laws, Chris Huhne. Now observe how many Tories front benchers he mentions-Cameron, Osborne, Hammond. That is the real change in the balance of power in this election. We have more heavy weight spokesmen than the official opposition. (Fawkes does also mention Douglas Carswell, who when I last looked was not a front bench spokesman and is described as a' little eccentric' by some-which I guess is code for a friend of Daniel Hannan )

My assumption is that  when Nick triumphs again on Thursday the Tories will get a little flaky. I think I can even hear Douglas Hurd talking to Jim Naughtie about his long time support for electoral reform..............

Monday, 19 April 2010

Favourite bill board of the week

Tories bottle it on Radio 4 Today

The BBC have been trying to get someone on their flagship programme Today to talk about their response to the Lib Dems and none was available. Th editor of Conservative Home stepped into the breach. Don't panic Mr Cameron, don't panic....

I've a bone to pick with Conservative Home. In a bit of negative campaigning they accused John Pugh of being 'young and inexperience'. Now John is not only a grandfather he is also old to enough to get a bus pass! He was also Leader of Sefton Council and has won two general elections as well as having a successful professional career before hand. I'm gobsmacked that Conservative Home have brought up the issues of age and experience-mind you John appears to be delighted to be described as 'youthful' which is not something that happens to men over 60 very often!

Sunday, 18 April 2010

autumn preparation pays off

I went off to the allotment today. Thanks to a little planing last year there are still crops to be harvested. Up by the blue water tub there are lots of leeks as well as a decent crop of garlic for later on. There is also a glut of blue sprouting broccoli which is selling for silly money at tescos. It's like so many other things is life; good preparation pays off.

Cycling back I noticed that several people had stuck our election address in the window-including one house on a main road bang next to a Tory poster.

Will the Mail back us

Mark Pack makes the point that the editorial line of newspapers cannot get badly out of kilter with their readers. I recall a discussion at the Policy Committee at the height of the first Alliance surge in the early 1980s. Richard Holme had had dinner with a high ranking  person at the Mail on Sunday which had developed quite a sympathetic editorial line. The question was how long would it last. The answer was as long as B1 women-the main target of their advertisers- polled as pro Alliance. I say put Colin Firth in all your literature, I thought his essay in the Why vote Lib Dem was excellent

Saturday, 17 April 2010

It is only one poll, but we are in the lead

April 17th, 2010
BPIX - Mail on SundayApr 17Apr 10
LIB DEMS32%20%
Political Betting has the story

BNP to stand in Birkdale



The following is a statement as to the persons nominated for election as Councillors for the



The following persons have been nominated:

Candidate’s Surname

Other Names in full

Home Address
in full

 (if any)

Name of Proposer

Decision of Returning Officer that Nomination Paper is invalid or other reason why a person nominated no longer stands nominated
Iain Malcolm
27 Dunkirk Rd
Liberal Democrats    
John Pugh

Terry John
368 Liverpool Road
U.K. Independence Party    
David Matthews

58 New-Cut Lane
The Southport Party    
Arthur R. Rimmer

11 Chesterfield Road
L23 9XL
British National Party  Local People First    
Mark A. Erickson-Rohrer

192 Sandbrook Road
The Conservative Party Candidate    
Peter G. Pentall

Frank Michael
63 Dunbar Road
The Labour Party Candidate    
Susan M. Robinson

Right wing voters in Birkdale-who have been in the minority for many years-are spoilt for choice in this years. Terry Durrance is standing again for UKIP in addition to his role as their parliamentary candidate. I profoundly disagree with Terry about his politics but I do acknowledge that he is a genuine local man who diligently tries to champion his cause. In my experience he does so in a courteous and proper manner. 

The other right wing candidates are not local to Birkdale-and in the case of the Southport party doesn't live in the town at all!

That is also true of the BNP candidate. I am confident that she will finish bottom of the poll. Birkdale people will want nothing to do with her politics of hate, racism and negativeness. I would not ban her from standing. We need to defeat their arguments and show that there is a better way for us all to live and prosper together. I was very proud of the way that Nick Clegg stood up for decency in these matters in the debate on Thursday. We will do our best to follow his example.