web analytics

Lib Dems hammered

Written By: - Date published: 10:07 am, May 7th, 2011 - 22 comments
Categories: uk politics - Tags: ,

Hard to feel terribly sorry for Britain’s Liberal Democrat Party:

Liberal Democrats have taken ‘big knocks’, says Nick Clegg

Lib Dem leader admits party taking brunt of anger at coalition amid worst local elections performance in 30 years

The Liberal Democrats appear to have suffered their worst performance at the polls in 30 years, suffering heavy losses across the north of England, Scotland and Wales.

Nick Clegg admitted his party was taking the brunt of the blame for a perception that the coalition government is dragging Britain back to the Thatcherism of the 1980s.

The Liberal Democrat leader and deputy prime minister said the party had taken “big knocks” in the local elections.

Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas. Junior coalition parties propping up regressive right wing 80’s retread governments — wherever you may be — look to the Lib Dems and beware…

Update: As widely predicted, the aggressive and cynical campaign against the (somewhat proportional) AV voting system was also successful, another slap in the face to the Lib Dems.

22 comments on “Lib Dems hammered”

  1. The Lib Dems are the party that is backing the Conservative policies the Lib Dem voters don’t support…so no wonder at all the voters have wandered off to look at other options. Clegg only had one shot at this. He would have been better to say NO to stuff his people won’t support…and go to the polls over it if necessary. They would have stuck with him much more than they have being the Tories lackey (as Lib Dem voters see it) . But as it is…..He’s shown too little backbone. This could kill the Lib-Dems as a force.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      It’s definitely killed Nick Clegg as a force. What a shame, he’s a young guy with a lot of smarts and energy, and now he has to live out the rest of his political life with mud smeared on his face.

      It would have to be some turnaround for him to save his political life now, and leave a legacy which is something other than “this is the guy who single handedly trashed the Lib-Dems for the next 25 years”.

  2. Jenny 2


    Is the future of Maori Party foreshadowed by the fate of the UK’s Liberal Democrats?

    UK voters punish Liberal Democrats

    Britain’s Liberal Democrats slumped in local elections and were expected to lose a referendum on voting reform as voters punished the party for its role in a coalition that is making huge cuts in public spending.

    Lib Dem popularity has plummeted since they formed a coalition with the centre-right Conservatives last year, a decision that put them into government for the first time in 80 years and created Britain’s first coalition since World War Two.

    The government has embarked on a programme of swingeing public spending cuts to reign in a record budget deficit.

    Surely by now everyone realises that the loss of elector support that has befallen the Lib Dems in the UK, is the likely outcome for the Maori Party here, that is, if the Maori Party are part of another National Government.

    To preserve tax cuts for the wealthy, the Nats are promising to make public spending cuts, that proportionately will hit low income people the hardest. As the majority of Maori fit this demographic, Maori voters are unlikely to take these attacks lying down.

    As is likely going by current polling, to be in a position to make these attacks, the Nats must have Maori Party support.

    To ensure their political survival the Maori Party must ditch the Nats.

    To regain the Treasury Benches Labour must find coalition partners.

    This is not rocket science.

    With Hone Harawira gone, what possible reasons could Goff have to reject the Maori Party as a coalition partner?

    In the UK despite the Liberal Democrats being destroyed as a political force commentators are comfortable that the Lib Dems will not stray from supporting the Conservatives.

    This is because the British Labour Party in a fit of sectarian pique chose to deliver the country to the Tories rather than make any concessions to the Liberal Democrats. It is clear that the British Labour Party will not change it’s position of preferring to not rule at all, if it can’t rule alone. Preferring to be in opposition rather than to have to share power with a junior coalition party.

    The Lib Dems’ poor showing has prompted a few commentators to ask if the coalition could split and derail the austerity programme. But financial market investors do not appear to share the same fears.”Do they (the election results) jeopardize the coalition? Absolutely not, because the junior coalition partner has nowhere to go,” said Andrew Roberts, head of European rates strategy at RBS.

    Are there any lessons here for our Labour Party?

    Will Phil Goff like Gordon Brown high handely choose to pass the country over to the tender mercies of the Nats, rather than make concessions to junior coalition partners to form a Labour led government?

    As most of the concessions that the Maori Party and the Greens are likely to ask for, are to the left of Labour’s current positions, what’s the problem?

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      The Maori Party will not openly state that it will consider a coalition with Labour – my guess.

      The reason being they see National as winning and they want to stay on the good side of National in 2011 coalition negotiations.

      You are correct on your main points though – Labour need political party allies, and sitting on 30-35% support that is blindingly obvious.

      • Jenny 2.1.1

        The Maori Party will not openly state that it will consider a coalition with Labour – my guess.

        Colonial Viper

        Very true CV. But what is there to stop Labour announcing that they are prepared to consider the Maori Party as a possible Coalition Partner?

        Surely the sooner Goff makes such an announcement the better. Otherwise the impression that persists, is that the Maori Party are considered by Labour still, in the deliberately insulting words of Helen Clark, – “The last cab off the rank”.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      With Hone Harawira gone, what possible reasons could Goff have to reject the Maori Party as a coalition partner?

      It’s a hard-right party with a proven ideology against that of Labours?

      ”Do they (the election results) jeopardize the coalition? Absolutely not, because the junior coalition partner has nowhere to go,”

      That’s said by someone who doesn’t understand the Westminster system and the notion of confidence & supply. The Lib-Dems don’t need to go anywhere – they just need to vote against the budget and the whole lot falls down around the Brits ears.

      • Jenny 2.2.1

        It’s a hard-right party with a proven ideology against that of Labours?

        Draco T Bastard

        Draco, could you clarify what you mean here, is it a question or a statement?

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1

          It’s a question alluding to the fact that the Maori Partys ideology doesn’t gel with that of Labour. I suppose I should have started it with the word because

          • Jenny 2.2.1.1.1

            The “fact” that a coalition Party’s “ideology doesn’t gel with that of Labour”, hasn’t stopped Labour forming coalition’s with New Zealand First, an avowedly anti-immigrant party, or United Future an admitted conservative Party.

            Why is the Maori Party considered beyond the pale?

            • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1.1.1

              For the same reason that National and Act are. National, Act and the Maori Party are all about enriching the few while Labour tend to be about the many. This could even be said about NZ1st and United Future even though they’re both conservatives.

              • Colonial Viper

                NZ1 and UF are socially conservative yes, but they will bend to whomever is in power…further I think that Winston has thought very long and very hard, while in the wilderness, as to what he wants his political legacy to be.

                And trust me, breaking apart NZ and selling it in little pieces to the global elite is NOT it.

      • Jim Nald 2.2.2

        “they just need to vote against the budget and the whole lot falls down around the Brits ears”

        or just abstain?

        wondering how the numbers pan out with dem abstaining and opp voting against?

        if the coalition post-6 May 2010 has proved to deliver crap gov, then dem should click rewind and replay.

        the failure in clegg’s thinking will be the thought that it is inevitable and there’s no choice but to be tied to cameron till the end

  3. There will be no coalition with Labour whilst the present two leaders are in control. Sharples is a solid Nat and Turia is consumed with dislike for Helen Clark .So badly she is unable to realise that Helen has gone . Dispite her continued bleating about “My people ” her interests are me, me, me .
    She could not care less about “Her people’ why else would she vote for the anti worker /Maori policies this right- wing party has been responsible for?

    • Jenny 3.1

      Sharples is a solid Nat and Turia is consumed with dislike for Helen Clark .So badly she is unable to realise that Helen has gone.

      Pink Postman

      Well Pink, all the more reason for Goff to put out the olive branch, Labour have nothing to lose, and at the least it would show that the Labour Party leadership are not as blind and stupidly sectarian as you have emotively painted the Maori Party.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        Labour has to build bridges with the Mp. No other choice.

        And if they were smart, they would be talking to McCarten and Bradford as well.

  4. swordfish 4

    Good news. This has been a long time coming. Polls last year suggested around half the LibDem vote had swung to Labour since the last UK election.

    @ The Pink Postman – I think when Turia talks about “my people” she’s actually referring to the small, affluent, Maori Elite with which she closely identifies.

    • Jenny 4.1

      Thanks for that info Fish, I think it could be productive to see the results, if a similar such poll was done in New Zealand.

      Is the Maori Party vote holding up?

      And if it isn’t, where is it going?

      On the basis of this information Labour would be able to make some informed decisions, rather than just reacting emotively.

  5. Labour could go with the maory party and form a labour, green maori government. They could also give positions to the maori party, but not give one to Turiana. Making it clear that Going with National has(had) its costs.

    What will likely happen if National come back and the Maori Party are partners, is that the Maori Party will be the fall guys for Asset Sales (which maori corporate elite like Tuku Morgan would be ok with, as long as they got their slice of our pie, and a few other pies as well).

    Best thing is for Labour to announce policies that are pro maori and create employment for more maori, maybe things like providing training for farming, forestry and in energy (Meridian could look at joint ventures with Iwi?) and in other fields. What does NZ lack? Where are skills missing. Skills training is needed for Maori rangatahi. Perhaps this is something that Shane Jones could head.

    Essentially labour needs a vision and plan, and once that is clear, they need allies to make it happen. A million jokes about Keys doesn’t change that basic fact: Labour needs a solid game plan. A plan for a recovery.

    Keys, Banks, Brash and Brownlee have a plan for surgery and massive cuts. People are sick of being bleed dry.

  6. I don’t think there’ll be any possibility of an LGM coalition until after Turia retires. She’s a hardline social conservative and she still resents Labour for the S&F legislation. If Labour backed away from that albatross, I suspect Sharples would relent, especially if Labour and the Greens looked like winning a majority in November or 2014. He strikes me as a pragmatist and social liberal. All of which depends on whether the Mana Party ends up decimating them in the Maori electorates, however.

    • Jenny 6.1


      Personally I can’t see why Labour shouldn’t back away from the S&F “albatross”. This legislation is a proven to blank cheque for oil companies and the sand mining companies to trample over customary rights, and usage, up and down the coast and into the deep sea, unimpeded by pesky legal challenges from this nation’s First People, as happened to them in Canada.

  7. Jenny 7


    More grief arising for local iwi, legally dis-empowered by the Foreshore and Seabed Legislation.

    It’s well over time that Labour distanced themselves from this right wing attack on Maori at the behest of big business and mining lobbyists.

  8. A perfect example of just how power corrupts. A party of morals before they were elected…

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • TPK struggles to measure Whānau Ora outcomes
    The Government needs to explain why so many vulnerable whanau are falling through the cracks, Labour’s Whānau Ora spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. The Minister of Māori Development Te Ururoa Flavell attended the Māori Affairs Select Committee to highlight “gains” – ...
    52 mins ago
  • EY: TPP stamp duties on foreigners may have to apply to Kiwis
    The Government’s claim that a TPP-enabled tax on foreign buyers would amount to a ban has been exposed as folly by tax experts, who say that in most cases a tax would apply to Kiwi buyers too, says Labour’s Trade ...
    20 hours ago
  • Project 300 short on facts
    A Minister’s pet scheme to employ 300 disabled people in Christchurch seems to be short on facts, says Labour’s Disability Issues spokesperson Poto Williams.  “Nicky Wagner cannot provide solid evidence to show that her much vaunted Project 300 has actually ...
    20 hours ago
  • Who are they going to call?
    A cry for help from New Zealand’s longest-running crisis line highlights chronic underfunding of the sector by the Government, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Lifeline is THE go-to helpline for people in crisis, taking up to 180,000 calls each ...
    1 day ago
  • Five months too long for homeless to wait
    New figures revealing homeless people registered with Work and Income are waiting an average of 155 days to be housed shows the Government is totally overwhelmed by the housing crisis, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “What’s worse is ...
    2 days ago
  • Minister in cloud cuckoo land
    Hekia Parata needs a very big reality check if she truly believes every parent has the choice of sending their child to a private school, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Questioned in the House today about plans to pump ...
    2 days ago
  • Convention centre failure means years of uncertainty for CBD
    The failure of Gerry Brownlee’s planned convention centre deal leaves Christchurch facing uncertainty about when activity will be restored to the CBD, says Labour’s Canterbury spokesperson Megan Woods. “As one of the CBD’s major anchor projects, the convention centre complex ...
    2 days ago
  • PCE proves water quality still deteriorating
    The PCE State of the Environment Report shows that river water quality is continuing to get worse across large parts of New Zealand, says Labour’s Environment and Water spokesperson David Parker. “Water quality has deteriorated in Canterbury, Central Otago, Auckland, ...
    2 days ago
  • Families with new babies victims of today’s veto
    Families with new babies are the victims of an historical “first” for the New Zealand Parliament today. “For the first time ever, a Bill will have a third reading debate and no vote will be taken at the end because ...
    2 days ago
  • Crime on the rise…again!
    The Police Minister’s contention that Police have enough resources to meet the expectations of New Zealand communities is not reflected in the Police’s own statistics, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “Yet again, reported burglaries have increased in every region ...
    2 days ago
  • Private schools beneficiaries of extra cash
    Plans to give more taxpayer money to private schools at a time when state schools are struggling to make ends meet says everything about the National Government’s twisted priorities, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Not only did this year’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Inequality getting worse under National
    Inequality is getting worse under National with almost 60 per cent of the wealth in this country concentrated in the hands of the top 10 per cent according to Statistics NZ figures released today, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    3 days ago
  • Government freezes elderly out of insulation subsidy
    Government cuts to the Warm Up New Zealand insulation subsidy means it will now only be available for rental properties and could leave many elderly homeowners cold this winter, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In this year’s Budget the Government ...
    4 days ago
  • Shewan report delivers rebuke to National
    John Shewan’s report into foreign trusts is a rebuke to John Key and the National Party who have protected an industry that has damaged New Zealand’s reputation, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Three years ago the Inland Revenue Department ...
    4 days ago
  • Auckland Airport rail analysis must be made public
    The Government should publicly release its detailed analysis of rail to Auckland Airport before it closes off options, so the public can have an informed debate, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. The Transport Agency today said it is ...
    4 days ago
  • Minister approved OIO consent despite death and investigations
    Louise Upston must say if she knew Intueri was being prosecuted for the death of a student and under a funding investigation when she approved its overseas investment consent to buy another education provider, says Labour’s Land Information and Associate ...
    5 days ago
  • Brexit vote costs NZ effective EU voice
    Despite being extremely close the result of the referendum in Britain reflects the majority voice, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “While we respect the decision to leave the EU, it goes without saying the move will usher in ...
    7 days ago
  • Pasifika Education Centre doomed
    The Pasifika Education Centre appears doomed to close down this December, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio  “In a written question I asked the Minister whether he would put a bid in for more money. His answer ...
    7 days ago
  • Onetai Station review a shameful whitewash
    A report released today on the Overseas Investment Office’s (OIO) good character test is a whitewash that does nothing to improve New Zealand’s overseas investment regime, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson David Cunliffe. “The review of the good character test ...
    7 days ago
  • We need a national strategy to end homelessness now
    Long before I entered Parliament, housing and homelessness were issues dear to my heart. I know from personal experience just how hard it is to find an affordable home in Auckland. In my maiden speech, I talked about how when ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Capital feels a chill economic wind
      Wellington is on the cusp of recession with a sharp fall in economic confidence in the latest Westpac McDermott Miller confidence survey, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark.  “Economic confidence amongst Wellingtonians has dropped 12% in the past ...
    1 week ago
  • Dive school rort took six years to dredge up
    News that yet another private training establishment (PTE) has rorted the Government’s tertiary funding system since 2009 shows that Steven Joyce has no control of the sector, says Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe. “Like Agribusiness Training and Taratahi, ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s housing crisis hitting renters hard
    National’s ongoing housing crisis is causing massive rental increases, with Auckland renters being hit the hardest, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    1 week ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • A Day with the PSA
    This week, along with Labour MP Kris Faafoi, I accepted an invitation to spend a day working alongside the good folk at the Public Service Association in Wellington. As the Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson for the Greens, I was ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Government holds Northland back
    New information shows Northland remains the most economically depressed region in New Zealand, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Clark. “The latest Westpac McDermott Miller regional survey found that more Northlanders believe their local economy will deteriorate this year than ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebstock report into MFAT leaks a disgrace
    An Ombudsman’s report on the Paul Rebstock investigation into MFAT leaks shows the two diplomats at the centre of the case were treated disgracefully, says Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi.  “The Ombudsman says one of the diplomats Derek Leask ...
    1 week ago
  • More families forced to turn to food banks for meals
    Increasing numbers of families are having to go to food banks just to put a meal on the table, according to a new report that should shame the Government into action, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • We have a housing emergency in New Zealand
    Auckland, New Zealand, where house prices have risen 20 percent in the last year alone We have a housing emergency in New Zealand.  Like many people we are ashamed and angry that in a wealthy country like ours, we have ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Aussie reforms signal trouble ahead for school funding plan
    Plans by the Government to return to bulk funding are likely to see increased class sizes and schools most in need missing out on much-needed resources, Labour’s Acting Education spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The signaled return to bulk funding is ...
    1 week ago
  • Toxic Sites – the down low on the go slow
    In  2011, I negotiated an agreement with the National Government to advance work on cleaning up contaminated sites across the country. This included establishing a National Register of the ten worst sites where the creators of the problem could not ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Aucklanders face new motorway tax of up to $2500 a year
    The Government wants to tax Aucklanders thousands of dollars a year just to use the motorway network, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Officials estimate the average city commute is 11.8km. This means for the average Aucklander commuting five ...
    1 week ago
  • 15 corrupt bank managers identified in student fraud
    New information show 15 bank managers in India have been identified by Immigration New Zealand as presenting fraudulent documents on behalf of foreign students studying here, Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Documents obtained by Labour under the Official Information ...
    1 week ago
  • National leaves Kiwi savers the most vulnerable in OECD
    News last week that Israel’s Finance Minister will insure savers’ bank deposits means New Zealand will be left as the only country in the OECD that has no deposit insurance to protect savers’ funds should a bank fail. Most Kiwis ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    1 week ago
  • Comprehensive plan for future of work needed
    A Massey University study showing many New Zealanders are unaware of the increasing role of automation in their workplace, highlights the need for a comprehensive plan for the future of work, says Grant Robertson, Chair of Labour’s Future of Work ...
    1 week ago
  • Another National Government failure: 90 day work trials
    On Friday last week, the Treasury released a report by MOTU economic consultants into the effectiveness of the controversial 90-day work trial legislation. The report found that there was “no evidence that the policy affected the number of hires by ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Iraq mission extension case not made
    The Prime Minister has not made the case for extending the Iraq deployment another 18 months nor the expansion of their mission, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “Labour originally opposed the deployment because the Iraqi Army’s track record was poor, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Denial is a long river
    William Rolleston from Federated Farmers made the absurd claim on RNZ on Saturday that “we actually have very clean rivers”. This statement doesn’t represent the many farmers who know water quality is in big trouble and are working to clean ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Melanoma deaths could be avoided by an early access scheme
      The tragic death of Dunedin’s Graeme Dore from advanced Melanoma underlines the cruelty of this Government in promising a treatment but delaying for months, says Labour’s Health Spokesperson Annette King.  “Graeme was diagnosed with Melanoma last year. He used ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Assessing the Defence White Paper
    The Government’s recently released Defence White Paper has raised questions again about New Zealand’s defence priorities, and in particular the level and nature of public funding on defensive capabilities. The Green Party has a longstanding belief that priority must be ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis’ confidence drops again: Economy needs a boost
    Westpac’s consumer confidence survey has fallen for the seventh time in nine quarters, with middle income households ‘increasingly worried about where the economy is heading over the next few years’, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This survey is a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Relocation grant simply kicks can down the road
    The response by state house tenants and social agencies to the Government’s rushed plan to shift families out of Auckland tells us what we already knew – this is no answer to the chronic housing shortage, Opposition Leader Andrew Little ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Peace hīkoi to Parihaka
    On Friday a Green crew walked with the peace hīkoi from Ōkato to Parihaka. Some of us were from Parliament and some were party members from Taranaki and further afield. It was a cloudy but gentle day and at one ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Children’s Commissioner right to worry about CYF transition
    The Government must listen to the Children’s Commissioner’s concerns that young people under CYF care could be ‘negatively impacted’ as the new agency’s reforms become reality, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern. “Dr Russell Wills has used the second annual ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill English exaggerates PPL costs to justify veto
    The Finance Minister has used trumped-up costings to justify a financial veto against parents having 26 weeks paid parental leave, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “Bill English’s assertion on RNZ yesterday that the measure would cost an extra $280 million ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must refund overcharged motorists
    Labour is calling on the Government to refund motor registration fees to three-quarters of a million Kiwi motorists whose vehicles were wrongly classified under National’s shambolic ACC motor vehicle risk rating system, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says.“Minister Kaye’s ridiculous ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 90-day work trials an unfair failure which must change
    A new Treasury report shows the Government’s 90-day trials haven’t helped businesses and are inherently unfair, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “The Motu report found that 90-day trial periods had no impact on overall employment and did not ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Massey East houses a start but Nick Smith should think bigger
    The Massey East 196-home development is a start but the Government must think bigger if it is to end the housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “It is great the Government is finally realising it needs to build ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere