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Eagle Eye

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Ben Chu: Liberal Democrat false consciousness?

Posted by Eagle Eye
  • Tuesday, 11 May 2010 at 05:37 pm

I'm very suspicious of all those Labour tribalists arguing that what Lib Dem activists and voters all want is a progressive coalition with Labour.
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A good example of the genre from Tim Horton on Left Foot Forward here.

Horton brings some solid facts to the party such as this from a pre-election YouGov poll:

"43% of Lib Dem voters described themselves as centre-left or left, compared to 29% who described themselves as centrist and just 9% who described themselves as centre-right or right. 39% of Lib Dem voters described the Liberal Democrat party as being centre-left or left, compared to 33% of Lib Dem voters who described the party as being centrist and just 5% who described the party as being centre-right or right."

He goes on to suggest that a Lib-Con deal would result in Lib Dems rushing into the arms of Labour.

But if Lib Dem voters are all, at heart,Tory-hating lefties one wonders why they didn't just vote Labour in the election? The tribal Labour answer seems to be some sort of false consciousness. They can't seem to grasp that there is a genuine antipathy between the two parties.

Perhaps if the Labour leadership had properly engaged with the Lib Dems, their efforts to form a coalition might have gone better.

 


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