Saturday, 8 January 2011
Thoughts on the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election
Big day for the Lib Dems on Thursday with the by-election due to take place near my old stomping ground 'up north'. Will Elwyn win the day for Nick and provide the party with a boast despite the media portrayal of thousands of members deserting a sinking ship? Given all the publicity that I have received down here in Sussex, I can only imagine the hard work being undertaken by those in the actual constituency; I do hope that their efforts are rewarded with victory. Rather than focus on the negative, the electorate both locally and nationally should be reminded of key Lib Dem successes in Government; Pupil premium - helping disadvantaged kids in the formative years of schooling; Trident - knocked on the head for the life of this Government and therefore saving the taxpayer billions; starting the process of raising the tax threshold to £10,000 thus reducing the Income Tax liability for many; increasing, for the first time in 15 years, the provision of social housing; scrapping the ID card proposal and, perhaps most significantly, starting the process of devolving power from central Government to the people - the Localism Bill will change the political landscape for a generation once it becomes an Act. Would any of these measures have been introduced by a Tory majority administration? I very much doubt it!