Tuesday, 24 August 2010


I'm baffled by Guido's logic on the appointment of Matthew "Higher Rate Tax Avoiders Alliance" Elliot to run the anti-AV campaign:
With the pro-AV campaign likely to be run out of Cowley Street, or at least by LibDem proxies, it seems wise to choose someone who is not a Conservative Party figure, not least because he will have to win Labour and union support for the campaign as well as keep some of the more ambivalent Tories onside. The aim is to assemble the strongest, broadest based campaign possible to oppose AV regardless wider of ideological differences.
Given that there is a significant knee-jerk anti-AV tendency amongst Labour supporters who simply want to put one over on the Lib Dems this appointment (from a Rightie perspective) looks tactically clueless. The TPA is about as popular with Labour supporters and union members as hunt saboteurs are with the Countryside Alliance. It's like magnetic repulsion. So appointing the head of TPA to this campaign will surely tip many of those who are only against AV because the Lib Dems are for it back in the other direction. And that in turn may help rapproachement with the LDs.

If I were a pro-AV Lib Dem I'd see this appointment as a plus point, and I'd be hammering it home with Labour supporters as often as possible.


Nick Drew said...

Guido's logic is very simple:

Elliot is a very effective operator - as in, he actually gets things done, you know, like practical stuff

politics doesn't just work on the basis of who repels whom, Tom !

Tom Powdrill said...

agreed, but if was running a campaign that was trying to get support from the 'other side' I wouldn't appoint someone who was very antagonistic to them. It's not like appointing a Tory MP to run it, we are talking about an organisation that even moderate lefties love to hate. Bob Crow is successful in terms of getting a good deal for his members. would right libertarians want to form common cause with him over.... anything?

As I said there is a definite feeling amongst some Labour supporters that the AV referendum is an opportunity to get one over on the Libs. But this appointment gives us the choice of using it to put one over on an unpopular Right figure. It's good news for the LDs in that sense.