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Thursday, March 04, 2010

Labour MP protests too much

An unusual twist in today's Independent in which a Liberal Democrat candidate is accused of seeking to buy a seat with his own money.

Chris Nicholson, who is standing for the Liberal Democrats in Streatham, South London is a wealthy businessman who has given the party £300,000 over the last three years, nearly all of which has apparently been spent in the seat he hopes to represent after the next election. Mr. Nicholson is not a non-dom. He pays UK taxes on all of his earnings.

All of this has upset the Labour MP, Keith Hill, who has claimed that the scale of spending in his seat by an "enormously wealthy man who was recently in command of £800,000 bonuses" is "frankly undemocratic". He said: "What we are seeing here is the attempted purchase of a parliamentary seat."

Mr. Hill is the member of a party which has legislated several times on electoral law and has set down the rules on funding. Nothing that Mr. Nicholson or the Liberal Democrats have done contradicts these rules. Indeed as the Lib Dem PPC points out Labour is able to draw on Mr Hill's Commons communications allowance and the newspaper produced by Labour-run Lambeth council to get the party's message across:

"Contrary to what Keith Hill alleges, we are being outspent by Labour in terms of what they are putting out. A lot of that is coming from public funds."

If Mr. Hill and his ilk are really concerned about this sort of activity then they need to legislate to change the rules. The reason they have not is because they know that to do so will cut off similar funding to their own parties. They also know that the only realistic alternative is to extend state funding to compensate and so as to ensure that there is a level playing field.

It is time for those complaining to put their money where their mouth is and bite on this particular bullet.
Thought it was just South Wales that Labour put in the "so called Democratic party" when referring to the Lib Dems?
Miss Wagstaff Presents:

".......Since 2001, Ashcroft has given £5,160,915 to the Tories. Mittal, Cohen and Paul all Non-Doms have given Labour £6,734,250. Paul funded at least one of Brown's election campaigns. Between 2001 -2008 Lord Paul sat and attended the House of Lords 1047 times and claimed £281,263 in expenses. Please tell me if I'm wrong, but Lord Paul has left the Government over Expense issues. Over the same period 2001 - 2008 Lord Ashcroft attended the House 285 times and claimed no expenses...."

Two wrongs don't make a right.
I was thinking more along the lines of "Do as I say not as I do!" by Labour
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