Problems with Independents!

I am unlikely to vote in the May County Council elections, I probably won't have the opportunity. My current councillor is about 90% likely to be returned unopposed (again). Even if he is opposed he will probably win hands down with a huge majority.

The councillor stands as a Liberal Democrat candidate, but his ward isn't a Liberal Democrat Heartland. He could stand for any part of the political spectrum from hard left to hard right or anywhere in between and still be elected as an individual who is trusted to represent the village.

The reason why the other parties (who probably enjoy grater support in a general election than the Lib Dems do) wont stand against him is because of the potential embarrassment of being thrashed by the Lib Dems. Lib Dems 1000 votes / other party 100 votes wouldn't make a good election night score card and would feature on those graphs, that the Lib Dems love, ad-nauseam come the next Westminster or Assembly election. Better to let him have a shoo in than a major victory!

When I was a devoted party member I use to hate independent council candidates with a vengeance. They were either party supporters who let the side down by not flying the flag for the party, or members of parties who didn't have a hope in hell of winning if they showed their true colours - dishonest, duplicitous buggers the lot of them.

Now that I have given up party membership I'm beginning to have second thoughts. If Mrs Local Councillor is being elected as an individual because she is a popular member of the community rather than because of her party colour, wouldn't she be more honest and true to her constituents if she stood as an independent rather than the representative of a party that the majority of her voters don't subscribe to?


  1. What vexes me is the fact that there seem to be two tiers of councillors now, the ones in the cabinet and the ones who are not. Also the officials seem to have far too much power vis a vis the elected members and there seems to be a move to pigeon all councillors into some kind of party grouping for administrative convenience.

    We need more democracy at local level, some American style democracy but fat chance with so many fantasising about socialism.

  2. We need more democracy at local level, some American style democracy but fat chance with so many fantasising about socialism.

    Please god no more elected mayors. In Stoke they were so delighted with the position of mayor that nearly 10,000 people spoilt their ballot papers.

    Here's an idea. Scrap the cabinet system and have a series of committees. It might just work ;-)

    BTW, am I going mad, or was there a post on here yesterday about the illegal accessing of Barack Obama's passport details?

  3. "Please god no more elected mayors"

    I take it you're all for scrapping Red Ken then?

  4. The Obama post was on Glyn's blog: A View from Rural wales

    Thanks Alwyn. I am going mad then, thanks for the good news. lol.

    I take it you're all for scrapping Red Ken then?

    London seems to be the one place that it is working, and I say that even if Boris takes over ;-)

  5. good post, but you and many others Alwyn are obviously under the impression that we live in a democracy here in the Wales, i'd say its more like a benign dictatorship at all levels :)

  6. Degwel Thomas23/03/2008, 16:07

    Elected mayors also work in France where last week they elected 36000. Of course it is far easy to pretend we have local democracy in Wales when in reality with capping most council no longer have fiscal autonomy and if you talk to any member of a politcal party in Wales they will tell you that it has been very difficult to persuade individuals to stand for election this May. Local government in Wales is in crisis but no where it seems cares.