Wednesday, May 03, 2006


Deceiving English Voters

Pity the poor voters of England going to the polls tomorrow who seriously believe the FibDems are passionate about scrapping the council tax.

They ain't. Particularly if it means losing Ministerial Mondeos.

In October 2004 Charles Kennedy's was flustered on the Jonathan Dimbleby Show when challenged by a member of the audience about the Lib Dems coalition with Labour in Scotland and how they had voted against the Council Tax.

Kennedy seemed rather put out by the Council Tax comment and said that he "didn't know" what the guy was talking about on the Council Tax and that the position is the same in Scotland as in England. Oh really? Well, here's their position in England as articulated by the FibDems own website:
"As Liberal Democrats, we have campaigned to replace Council Tax with a fairer system ever since we were formed - firstly as a replacement for the rates, then for the Poll Tax, and now to replace Council Tax. We're nothing if not consistent!"

And the petition to John Prescott states:
"The Council Tax is an unfair tax, based simply on outdated valuations of property and with no link to ability to pay. It should be scrapped and replaced with a system based on people's ability to pay."

So far, so good (though the "we're nothing if not consistent" line is typical FibDemmery ego massaging). But can you guess what happened in Scotland when this motion was proposed by the Scottish Socialist Party:
"That the Parliament agrees that the council tax should be abolished and replaced with an income-based alternative."

That's right, it's almost the same wording as the Axe The Tax petition. So what did the Lib Dems do? They not only voted against it but it was a Lib Dem Executive Minster, Tavish Scott, who tabled and led in the debate on opposing the SSP motion.

So Kennedy (and now Ming) are either lying or don't know what's going on in their own country as far as the party's stance on the Council Tax goes. So which is it from the party of honesty?

"Nothing if not consistent"? Well, nothing it is.

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