Today Tim Farron the leader of the Liberal Democrats reported that he had received texts and calls from Labour members distraught at the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party. I suppose the implication being that some or many might defect to the Liberal Democrats.
Now anyone who knows me or has read this blog knows that I have little time for the Labour Party, or for many within it. I have tweeted over the last few days that I suspect the Parliamentary Labour Party will try to bring Corbyn down, thus destroying their party as they go against the clear vote by the members of the party. I never considered the worst scenario that might be many defecting to the Liberal Democrats.
There are many within the Liberal movement that want the party to seize the middle ground therefore they might welcome an influx of both disillusioned Labour members and MPs. I don’t. I feel the Liberal movement should not be about left, right or center but about what’s right, about an honest politics. I would like to think that it is about what is right and wrong, is it right to purchase new weapons of mass destruction when many are going hungry and using food banks, is it right to cut tax credits while allowing big business to avoid paying tax, is it right to claim we live in a democracy when we have an unelected and unaccountable head of state and unelected second chamber.
These are some of the questions I feel we should be asking ourselves as Liberals. No more politics of hate, or power for power sake, no more broken pledges, but a politics that voters can embrace because of it’s honesty and common cause that most or many can agree with. I think people have had enough of the politics of old. Labour members who embraced the war on Iraq, that embrace austerity for austerity sake, that embrace the poorest paying for the richest, Labour MPs that will drop every principle they hold and run to safer ground to save their parliamentary privilege would not be welcomed by me.
I believe the election of Jeremy Corbyn was a moment where many in the Labour movement stood up against the politics of old, the politics of Blair and Mandelson. No matter if you agree with them or not I admire them for standing up to what was in effect the Tory Party within the Labour Party. They have started to clean out a dishonest infection within their party and I wish them every success in the world, however I DO NOT want the Coopers of the world , the opportunists of the Labour right to infect the Liberal Democrats with their politics of greed, and their politics of selfishness. If that happens I dread to think what will happen to the Liberal Democrats and ask myself where do the real Liberals go.