The New Statesman asked if I regretted voting for the Libdems a year ago at the General Election.
I regret the course of action Nick Clegg took after the election – but at the time it was the only decision I felt at ease with. The Labour Party of May 2010 was trying desperately to triangulate on the economy, on cutting benefits, on immigrants and asylum-seekers. It had no positive vision for the future and it was intellectually spent. I couldn’t bring myself to vote for it.
In hindsight, many decisions are regrettable, but we have no choice but to stand by them. I saw how quickly the Lib Dem leadership were willing to ditch their principles; I saw a much better vision articulated by Ed Miliband – so I joined Labour to support his leadership bid and that vision. And there were plenty who followed the same path. You live, you make mistakes and you learn. But you can’t whitewash your own history.
Laurie Penny was also asked the same question and says she nearly voted Libdem but changed at the last minute because she had a good Labour MP. I didn’t. I had Alan Keen: who was happy about going into Iraq, happy about the Third Runway at Heathrow and was claiming absurd amount of expenses. I just could not bring myself to vote for him.
I don’t really care much for some ultra-left idiots who keep mentioning this as some sort of proof that I’m not a leftie. Grow up, fools.
At the time I did campaign for Labour candidates in south London who I felt had more principles. I wasn’t alone in being a Libdem voter who joined Labour or switched the allegiance after the election. I hope both the Libdems and Labour keep that in mind.
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Filed in: Party politics