Rebecca Hanson (Bootle), Lib Dem Leader Jo Swinson & Keith Crawdron (Sefton Central) are ready to take on Jeremy Corbyn’s MP’s in Bootle (Peter Dowd) and Sefton Central (Bill Esterson) constituencies when the starting gun is fired for the soon to happen General Election.
Our crazy electoral system and the need for it to be changed to one that produces results proportional to the votes actually cast was probably the most significant national issue that brought me into Liberal politics in the first place back in 1980. Our rubbish electoral system usually produces governments that have only gained minority electoral support but are then given a Parliamentary majority. Not only that but it also gives us ‘safe seats’ where the election campaign usually ignores the voters in those constituencies altogether.
Any serious look at this ridiculous way of running a supposed democracy and you can only conclude that the Single Transferable Voting (STV) method should replace First Past the Post.
It kind of shows how poor our electoral system is when I can confidently predict the result of the next General Election in one constituency!
Peter Dowd has won his Party’s selection – the election involving the good people of Bootle is now all but irrelevant.
With Peter becoming an MP and I would add filling the boots of Joe Benton, one of the nicest people in politics, who will lead Sefton Council?
The choice is not obvious and no one really stands out within the Labour Group to fill Peter’s boots. There could be quite a punch up over this as that’s how Labour does its internal politics I hear.
Recently Iain Brodie Brown commented on his Birkdale FOCUS (see link below) web site
about the astonishing lack of women being MP or Mayor of Bootle. Jen Robertson a young councillor in Maghull has her say about this:-
I share Iain’s outrage but not necessarily his solution. I don’t want to live in a world where the only way a woman can win is if men step aside. Seems more to me like what’s needed is a new outlook within politics and within society.
I can’t help but notice the one woman that has been Mayor of Bootle is referenced in the list as ‘Mrs’, none of the men were referred to as ‘Mr’, somehow they appear either to have deemed her gender or marital status to be relevant. I think it’s important however to take a step back and realise women are hardly the only discriminated against group. How many of those Mayors were non-Caucasian, or disabled, or gay or transgender? I could go on, but it would be a long list. The problem likely isn’t as simple as them all being men, it’s that they’re all probably the same kind of man. Perhaps, aside from the issues of gender, they were a more diverse group than I have realised but it seems sadly unlikely.
Education I really think is the only way to change any of this and it’s so much harder once people grow up. Our schools need to prioritise teaching the ideals of equality and diversity, and their importance in any society, in a positive and proactive way.
There is no point criticising the past for not conforming to modern standards, it is as they say ‘a foreign country, they do things differently there’, but when we can’t conform to our own standards then we become so much worse than the merely ignorant that have gone before us. Politics on every level needs a more diverse involvement, and, when it gets it, it will benefit politics just as much as it will society.
The Liverpool Echo has the story – see link above.
I have commented on this situation before because, as a Liberal, I am able to put political tribalism to one side and say what a good MP Joe Benton is and indeed will be until the next General Election. For Labour to stab him in the back says more about those that did it than Joe whom I have always had a huge amount of respect for.
Now the ferrets are fighting in the sack and let’s face it you really could have put money on this happening.
My previous posting said:-
The BBC has the story although their photo of Joe is hardly a present day likeness!
I predicted this while ago as Bootle Labour clearly had the knives out for one of the nicest people in Parliament.
Unlike the disingenuous Labour remarks on his ‘retirement’ I really do wish him well. He is the kind of person who should be an MP and frankly if I lived in Bootle I would be proud to say he was my MP.
You can just see how his replacement could easily be another party political robot controlled by Labour HQ.