Regard, and respect Malcolm’s record to date on wordpress.com:
This, to his amazement, is post number 1000.
It ought to be a significant, dignified, seminal essay on one or other matter of great importance.
Instead, he found himself reflecting on the sad state (heh, heh!) of the Liberal Democrat Party.
This derived from a valid point being raised by Paul Waugh.
Waugh earned Malcolm’s respect, and the commendation of others, while he was political columnist for the London Evening Standard . He was uniquely worth the effort of hefting that rag-tag piece of newsprint. Now Waugh prates for “Lord” Ashcroft’s PoliticsHome, and is one of the few things in front of the pay-wall (but, still, usually well worth the effort).
Waugh is now suggesting a serious cash shortfall coming up for the LibDems.
LibDems “tithe” their elected representatives (so, admittedly, do other parties, if less blatantly).
Note that Waugh is here addressing only the English local elections:
Mike Smithson at Political Betting suggested earlier this week that Labour ought to be winning 500 seats each from the Tories and the Lib Dems. A Sun/YouGov analysis by local elections expert Colin Rallings then suggested that things could be even worse, with the Libs losing 700 of their 1850 councillors and the Conservatives losing 1,000 of their 5,050 councillors.
But whether it’s 500 or 700 Lib Dem losses, there’s a very significant fact that applies to them in a way it doesn’t to the Tories.
Losing seats means not just losing prestige and power – it also means losing hard cash.
There’s a good gloss on the Rallings Sun/YouGov poll (without messing with pay-walls) by Mike Smithson at politicalbetting.com
Now apply all that equally to the Assembly elections in Scotland and, indeed, to Wales.
Scotland looks dire for the LibDems: this week’s Scotsman/YouGov poll has the Party trailing in fifth spot — as graphic, right — even behind the Greens (who seem to be emerging as the protest vote of choice). That is a loss of some 11 seats (down from 16 in the present Assembly).
In Wales, the latest polling suggests at least one LibDem loss in the Assembly (which, admittedly, is a better deal than the predicted collapse of Plaid Cymru).
Suddenly the LibDem apparatus looks distinctly “shook” — as they (used to) say in West Cork).
Furthermore, now that the LibDems are inside the belly of the ConDem beast, they have already mislaid their “Short Money”, and therefore are another £1.75 million out of pocket.