I\’m not sure you\’ve quite understood our political system here

Meanwhile, a coalition government with no mandate for what they are doing

They\’re the people who could assemble a majority in the House of Commons. They\’ve a mandate to do whatever they can pass through said House of Commons. That\’s just what the system is.

We don\’t have a political system where those who can assemble such a majority can only do what is in their election manifesto. For the simple and obvious reason that time moves on and no government could or should be able to only do what they wrote up for the voters two, three, four years ago.

There is only one time when the concept of \”mandate\” becomes important in our political system.

The House of Lords promises not to oppose or overturn a policy which is included in the electoral manifesto of those who do manage to cobble together a majority in the House of Commons.

Other than that the entire idea of a \”mandate\” simply doesn\’t work.

16 comments on “I\’m not sure you\’ve quite understood our political system here

  1. There isn’t half a lot of poor loserism about the lefties at the moment. Because the coalition never promised to do something, or (more likely) because they failed to get themselves elected, the left seem to regard every policy by the coalition as illegitimate and are issuing dark warnings about turning violent if they don’t get their way.

    Did we see any of this from the right in the 13 years the left were in power? No, because the right can accept defeat like adults instead of lashing out like petulant children. It’s pathetic.

  2. Tim W, well said.

    Tim Newman, regarding “poor loserism”, I encountered Poe’s Law again the other day when I read a comment at CIF that “the Conservatives have not one an election in 50 years, why aren’t the people rising up” etc.

  3. I’m not sure the Salisbury Convention will apply to the coalition, I mean otherwise if they could get one Labour MP to join the govt would it also apply to things in the Labour Manifeto.

    And the Lib Dems don’t accept it anyway.

    Tim Newman -er fox hunting?

  4. The point is that though that may be what the system is it is not in any sense a democratic mandate if the electors were deceibed. In the same way no other government since 1945 has had a democratic mandate since the majority always voted against them. The conclusion is that we are not a democracy. However if we accept that a mandate can exist purely because somebody has the power without popular support then the word must also be applied to Stalin’s mandate & indeed Pol Pot’s which removes any meaning from the word.

    On the other hand Labour have never been any keener on having a democratic system or not lying in their manifestos to us & so have no cause to complain.

  5. Tim Newman -er fox hunting?

    I don’t recall many of the hunt supporters denying the legitimacy of the Labour government. I don’t remember much violence and threats of violence either.

  6. I DO remember that the police action on that Countryside Alliance march was a little more, shall we say, vigorous than last week’s ‘sit back and watch the students have fun’ day…

  7. “Cancer patients endure violence as they wait longer for fewer tests. Those sleeping rough in the winter cold suffer violence. ”

    High on her own rhetoric, she inflicts violence on the English language by evacuating the word ‘violence’ of any meaning.

  8. IMO, the prospect of getting rid of the Salisbury Convention is probably the *best* argument for reforming the House of Lords, given that it landed us with both the nationalization of shipbuilding and aerospace and the poll tax.

  9. I don’t get it. Haven’t the lefties been arguing for PR, and consensual coalitions, just like they have on the continent, for ages? You know, no ideological swings to the left or right, but a sensible coming together in the centre?

    So we finally get what they’ve been wanting, a hung parliament, with the Lib Dems in the hot seat. The LDs come down on the side of the largest party, do a deal, job done. How very consensual and European.

    And then the left start complaining that the coalition has ‘no legitimacy’?

    Well duh, that’s what coalition govt is all about. Three parties campaign on 3 separate manifestos, then they all get in a (no longer smoke filled) room, and hammer out a new deal, that no-one really voted for. Welcome to PR.

    Or could it be sour grapes, cos the left thought IT would be perpetually in govt, propped up by by the Lib Dems all the time? Surely not…………….

  10. “and the poll tax.”

    The poll tax has always struck me as infinitely fairer than the council tax, and certainly my retired parents thought so. As long as there is relief for the poorest, I don’t see the objections compared to a single pensioner paying more local tax than a house with half a dozen working people.

  11. Yes, but all you need is a sentence asserting “the real violence is the asault on …” (insert special interest that you want funded here), n0te that the Libs never said in the election that they were ever in favour of anything nasty (so actually, y’know, there’s a democratic majority in favour of nice things)…

    …and hey, you’ve created moral equivalence and it’s OK to kill policeman with fire extinguishers.

  12. Standard lefty bollocks. Inversion of reality, lies and delusion. The only governments with any mandate are socialist ones, natch.

  13. I don’t remember the mandate for mass unrestricted immigration or the Lisbon Treaty. Oddly, there weren’t articles about this in the Guardian at the time.

  14. Mass unrestricted immigration? FYI this is a UK blog, not an Imaginaria blog, and the UK has some of the world’s strictest immigration controls.

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