29 Mar 2011

Alternative vote – alternative Government?

The transitional national council is on display in front of us in a room in Methodist Central Hall, Westminster – Britain’s alternative coalition: Ed Miliband, Tim Farron, Caroline Lucas. They are gathered for the launch of Yes to Fairer Votes’ cross-party campaign.

You may remember Ed M said he didn’t want to be seen dead with Nick Clegg (I paraphrase) so an alternative line-up has been organised to lure him to the platform.

Ed Miliband told the gathering that a Yes vote was the only way to get rid of “politics as usual” – the key plank for the campaign, claiming the mantle of anti-politics. The Labour leader said AV would force parties to “build bridges” and that a “progressive majority” still lurked in the British body politick. He said he wanted support from “Brighton to Sky” (in the hope it was going out live? Maybe there was an “e” on the end of that).

Read more: FactCheck on AV myth busting

Charles Kennedy (the acceptable face of “Lib Demmery” presumably as far as Ed M is concerned) said the lesson of Scottish devolution is that if you don’t seize the opportunity for reform now you could end up waiting 25 years or more before you get another chance for reform. Tim Farron (who presumably also passes the Ed M test and is seen by some Lib Dems as their next leader – especially if the Coalition meets an unhappy end) said the No campaigners were “harrumphing majors.”

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