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Sunday, March 05, 2006


The Observer reports that when Ming Campbell stands up in front of Party Conference as leader for the first time in about an hour and a half from now, he will signal his determination to overhaul the party's economic and social policy and streamline its campaign machinery with the kind of US-style techniques imported by Labour and the Tories. No surprises there then.

Rather predictably they also report that we are seeking to part-privatise the Post Office. I suggest that they go back and re-read the motion but then as they have already decided what our agenda is then no doubt this will make no difference.

Still, it is nice to see my old friend and constituent, Peter Hain, wading in with claims that we are poised to do a deal with the Tories to oust Labour from Downing Street. As usual most of his claims are just absurd, whilst his analysis of the General Election result is psephologically suspect.

As I have demonstrated in the past the idea that by draining off Labour voters at last year's election, we handed a number of seats to the Tories is sheer nonsense. As this Guardian article makes clear the actual impact of switching from Labour to the Liberal Democrats was to er.... elect more Liberal Democrats MPs. Still, if it keeps Peter Hain happy, who am I to quibble?
The Times' Jenny Hjul actually reckons we're going to do a deal with Labour in an article charitably entitled Beware Ming and his band of bodgers:


I seriously think at the next general election we could be in the hilarious situation of both Labour and the Tories each accusing us of being in league with the other...

Funnily enough, looking through today's papers, this is the only negative piece on us - but then again, I suppose we know by whom The Times is paid for these days...
Will you rule out doing a deal with the Tories to oust Labour in the Assembly following May 2007?
If it was down to me then yes I would. However, it is not in my hands but those of the voters and the party as a whole. It is hardly relevant though to the psephological illiteracy of Peter Hain.
So, if it was "up to you", would you rule out doing a deal with Labour as well?

Considering what you think of Peter Hain.
No I would not rule out such a deal. I do not actually have a problem with Peter Hain per se, though of course I would not be working with him anyway.
While we're talking of deals, would you deal with Plaid?
I have made my position clear on these matters in past posts. However regardless of my personal position this is just meaningless speculation. Until we see what the voters have decided there is no point in even considering these matters.
It's just that I see the Lib Dems have said they'd be prepared to enter a coalition with the SNP in Scotland...
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