Saturday, February 16, 2008

David Heath.........Hero or Villian?

I have been reading the blogs on the David Heath situation with interest. To some a hero, to others a villian.

Whilst I have read and inwardly digested the wise words of various of my esteemed fellow bloggers, my position remains the same. As a party we supported a referendum on the constitution. I know that many fellow Lib Dems thought we were foolish to do this to start with, however, we are where we are. To attempt to take the moral highground on this by arguing that the Treaty is not the Constitution shows a complete disconnect with the electorate. Frankly, I don't give a fig for whether this is a Tory position or not, I don't make my judgements on whether on some occasions they accord with my opponents, but on what I personally believe is right. To the vast majority of people who can't be arsed to read either the failed Constitution or the new Treaty, the message they are getting is loud and clear. The Treaty reforms the existing treaties in a way that means 95% of the failed Constitution remains. Semantic points ain't gonna cut the mustard and we are in danger of looking foolish.

Another issue, one close to my heart, is that this u-turn on policy has never been debated at conference. It is an example of the leadership making policy on the hoof and then using emotional blackmail to try and get the parliamentary party and the membership's support. This is one of the outstanding legacies of Ming's cosy relationship with Brown and I am sorry Nick finds himself saddled with it.

An in/out referendum may have some merits, but it misses the point. So, David Heath? I actually think he is right. If we had clear party policy on this position I may think he should bite his tongue and take the whip, but we don't, he is a champion for those of us who have not had a chance to get our voices heard and he deserves our admiration and gratitude not our criticism.

3 comments:

Bob Shaw said...

Good post Linda - you won't be surprised to hear I disagree. David Heath should step down.

Norfolk Blogger said...

Well said. I agree 100%.

Linda Jack said...

Thanks both,

Didn't think you'd agree with me Bob! Well we will all soon be out of our misery..........

L