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Old 02-03-2019, 02:09 PM
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Labour/Tory MPs may resign the whip on 14 February


Story here: https://www.politicshome.com/news/uk...d-resign-whips

I know, yet another story about a possible party split. Yet, this may be more realistic as the Brexit deadline approaches. Chuka Umunna has been quite bold on Twitter with his opposition to a no deal Brexit.

Something is needed to shake up UK politics and this could be it. A party of moderate Labour and Tories opposed to the hard line Jacob Rees-Mogg Brexit policy could work. Add in the Lib Dems as well who are searching for a reason to exist.

The SDP was a failure electorally, but they were a success in finally breaking the hard left and radical trade union grasp on Labour. Perhaps a repeat in 2019 will be enough to crush the Corbyn cult or else the hard left Labour will wilt into a minor party and the moderate party can be the second major UK political party.
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Old 02-03-2019, 02:14 PM
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So what would this mean for Brexit? Calling it off? An even harder crash-and-burn? A (somehow) somewhat sane Brexit? No change, but a symbolic opposition to it, in preparation for an I-told-you-so?
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Old 02-03-2019, 03:00 PM
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This isn't an issue around which to form a lasting movement. As long as any such party is seen as the "Not X or Y party" it's never going to attract more than the passing protest vote, and it's going to fall apart as soon as things move on to an issue for which they have no clear common principle other than "Not too much of this or that".
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Old 02-03-2019, 06:12 PM
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As an American, the phrase "resign the whip" is not something I'm familiar with. Could someone please explain what this means?
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Old 02-03-2019, 06:15 PM
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As an American, the phrase "resign the whip" is not something I'm familiar with. Could someone please explain what this means?


Quit the party. Party discipline is much stronger in UK parliamentary democracy.
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Old 02-03-2019, 06:19 PM
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This isn't an issue around which to form a lasting movement. As long as any such party is seen as the "Not X or Y party" it's never going to attract more than the passing protest vote, and it's going to fall apart as soon as things move on to an issue for which they have no clear common principle other than "Not too much of this or that".
Which is a shame, as an electable centrist party would be great for the country, but it's looking unlikely that moderates will take control of either main party in the near future.

"Not too much of this or that" would actually be rather radical these days.
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Old 02-03-2019, 06:19 PM
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Quit the party. Party discipline is much stronger in UK parliamentary democracy.
Ignorance fought. Hooray!

So effectively, this means they're threatening to become independents, then? That sort of thing happens in US politics from time to time, but I don't recall any mass defections in my lifetime - just the occasional one-off like when Jim Jeffords quit the Republican party and threw the Senate to the Democrats in 2001, or Arlen Specter becoming a Democrat in his final term.
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Old 02-03-2019, 06:54 PM
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Ignorance fought. Hooray!

So effectively, this means they're threatening to become independents, then? That sort of thing happens in US politics from time to time, but I don't recall any mass defections in my lifetime - just the occasional one-off like when Jim Jeffords quit the Republican party and threw the Senate to the Democrats in 2001, or Arlen Specter becoming a Democrat in his final term.
Not so much become independents, and leave their current parties with a view to forming a new political party to compete against the existing parties.

Something similar happened in the early 1980s, when about 25 MPs quit the Labour Party to form the Social Democrats, which sought support from centrist voters. It formed an electoral alliance with the existing centrist Liberal Party, and in the ensuing general election the alliance secured 25% of the vote. However, given the crapulous British electoral system, this delivered only 3.5% of the seats in parliament. This was repeated at the next general election in 1987, when they won 22.6% of the vote but just 3.4% of the seats. The two parties then merged in 1988 to form the Liberal Democrats, which at the 1992 election secured 17.8% of the votes and, predictably, 3.1% of the seats.

Which basically illustrates the problem; there's really only room for two parties in the British electoral system, and any new centrist party faces a limited future unless it can supplant one of the existing dominant parties. The last time that happened was more than a century ago, when the Labour Party supplanted the Liberal Party.
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Old 02-04-2019, 12:44 PM
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I actually think a centrist party could supplant Labour as the second U.K. political party. Has there every been a time where the majority of the Labour MPs despised their leader? The Labour Party is stuck with Corbyn due to their stupid way of picking their leader. No one sees Corbyn as a potential PM.
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Old 02-04-2019, 07:23 PM
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I actually think a centrist party could supplant Labour as the second U.K. political party. Has there every been a time where the majority of the Labour MPs despised their leader? The Labour Party is stuck with Corbyn due to their stupid way of picking their leader. No one sees Corbyn as a potential PM.
Both the major parties are currently saddled with awful, just awful, leadership, and it may or may not be a coincidence that this has happened after both have altered the leadership selection methods to give more power to rank-and-file members of the party, and less to elected officials.

Regardless, I don't think a major realignment is likely juwst on the basis of the personal qualities, or lack of them, of the current party leaders. The current leadership is always ephemeral; you would need some enduring change in circumstances to occur.
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Old 02-05-2019, 01:04 AM
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I actually think a centrist party could supplant Labour as the second U.K. political party. Has there every been a time where the majority of the Labour MPs despised their leader? The Labour Party is stuck with Corbyn due to their stupid way of picking their leader. No one sees Corbyn as a potential PM.


Ramsay MacDonald in 1931 perhaps...

Michael Foot?


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Old 02-05-2019, 06:35 AM
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As long as any such party is seen as the "Not X or Y party" it's never going to attract more than the passing protest vote, and it's going to fall apart as soon as things move on to an issue for which they have no clear common principle other than "Not too much of this or that".
Or when it gets co-opted by the major parties like the UKIP was.
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Old 02-05-2019, 07:41 AM
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Indeed, but there's not much prospect of whatever this prospective party wants in relation to Brexit being co-opted.
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Old 02-05-2019, 07:22 PM
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Ramsay MacDonald in 1931 perhaps...

Michael Foot?
Hardly Michael Foot. He was elected by Labour MPs in the days when this is how the party leader was chosen. And, after his election, we had the split referred to above which removed a number of right/centrist MPs from the Parliamentary Labour Party, which if anything would tend to have strengthened his position.

Of course, by the end he was unpopular with his party, having led them to a crushing electoral defeat, but that's not untypical for UK party leaders. Most of them are unpopular in the end; that's why it's the end.
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Old 02-07-2019, 10:52 AM
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Owen Smith mentions he’s considering leaving.

https://twitter.com/bbc5live/status/...676375552?s=21
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Old 02-07-2019, 09:31 PM
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I'm American, but following Brexit keeps getting more frustrating.

I really don't understand why now is the time people are leaving Labour. Labour already backed the referendum, they nearly unanimously voted to invoke article 50 which set up no-deal Brexit as the default outcome unless the government makes another decision, they campaigned on leaving in the last general election, and they just voted down the deal May negotiated. Now, working with May to try to at least get some deal is the last straw?

I realize that there is no brexit outcome better than remaining, and it was stupid in the first place for the UK to even start down the path of leaving. However, the difference between simply cancelling article 50 and agreeing to be in a customs union with the EU is so much smaller than a customs union is to no deal brexit. I think there's a chance that if either Labour publicly backed remaining or having a second referendum over a year ago, or if remainers were willing to leave and join the Lib-Dems, they might have avoided this situation. Now the UK has about a month to decide to do anything that isn't no deal brexit.

Not only that, the political situation in parliament is now clear: Most of the Tory party wants to sign May's deal, but since they're in a minority government and the DUP and the hardline brexiters in the Tory party are never going to vote for any realistic deal, the only way a deal happens is if May wins it from outside the coalition. If Labour doesn't find some way to make an agreement with May's faction in the Tories, there simply is no way to avoid a no=deal brexit. Every other option has either been ruled out by hardliners in parliament who will never accept reality, or by the EU which has had it with the UK's bipolar approach to this whole mess.

If I could have picked the worst time for Labour to be hemorrhaging support for Corbyn, it would probably be now. And I actually think Corbyn's decisions up to this point have been terrible.

/rant

P.S. I also think if the UK did simply agree to a custom's union, they would be in the position where technically they can make a lot of their own regulatory laws, but have a giant financial incentive to align themselves with Europe. I think this may be a blessing in disguise for the country, because instead of politicians claiming that "Eurocrats" are preventing them from sticking up for their national interest, they would have to be honest and admit that they were voluntarily choosing to align with the EU because that's the way international relations and trade work. Really the only ways to solve the problem of half of the country blaming the EU for everything is to either leave completely and see how terrible it is for them or to end up in a situation where the government has to admit that even without being forced to, it will align with EU regulations 99% of the time.
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Old 02-07-2019, 11:17 PM
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Owen Smith mentions he’s considering leaving.


"Leave is in the air, everywhere we look around,
Leave is in the air, every sight and every sound,
And we don't know if we're being foolish,
Don't know if we're being wise,
But it's something we must believe in,
And it's there when we look in our eyes."
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Old 02-08-2019, 02:57 AM
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I'm American, but following Brexit keeps getting more frustrating.

I really don't understand why now is the time people are leaving Labour. Labour already backed the referendum, they nearly unanimously voted to invoke article 50 which set up no-deal Brexit as the default outcome unless the government makes another decision, they campaigned on leaving in the last general election, and they just voted down the deal May negotiated. Now, working with May to try to at least get some deal is the last straw?

I realize that there is no brexit outcome better than remaining, and it was stupid in the first place for the UK to even start down the path of leaving. However, the difference between simply cancelling article 50 and agreeing to be in a customs union with the EU is so much smaller than a customs union is to no deal brexit. I think there's a chance that if either Labour publicly backed remaining or having a second referendum over a year ago, or if remainers were willing to leave and join the Lib-Dems, they might have avoided this situation. Now the UK has about a month to decide to do anything that isn't no deal brexit.

Not only that, the political situation in parliament is now clear: Most of the Tory party wants to sign May's deal, but since they're in a minority government and the DUP and the hardline brexiters in the Tory party are never going to vote for any realistic deal, the only way a deal happens is if May wins it from outside the coalition. If Labour doesn't find some way to make an agreement with May's faction in the Tories, there simply is no way to avoid a no=deal brexit. Every other option has either been ruled out by hardliners in parliament who will never accept reality, or by the EU which has had it with the UK's bipolar approach to this whole mess.

If I could have picked the worst time for Labour to be hemorrhaging support for Corbyn, it would probably be now. And I actually think Corbyn's decisions up to this point have been terrible.

/rant

P.S. I also think if the UK did simply agree to a custom's union, they would be in the position where technically they can make a lot of their own regulatory laws, but have a giant financial incentive to align themselves with Europe. I think this may be a blessing in disguise for the country, because instead of politicians claiming that "Eurocrats" are preventing them from sticking up for their national interest, they would have to be honest and admit that they were voluntarily choosing to align with the EU because that's the way international relations and trade work. Really the only ways to solve the problem of half of the country blaming the EU for everything is to either leave completely and see how terrible it is for them or to end up in a situation where the government has to admit that even without being forced to, it will align with EU regulations 99% of the time.
It's in part because a while back the Labour Party Conference resolved that a second referendum would be a last resort if May's Deal were rejected by Parliament, but Corbyn has been refusing to carry out that resolution, despite making claims about the party becoming more democratic under him.

His letter the other day offering a compromise Brexit has angered many who see it is as betrayal of the Six Tests and the Conference resolution.
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Old 02-08-2019, 07:36 AM
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It's in part because a while back the Labour Party Conference resolved that a second referendum would be a last resort if May's Deal were rejected by Parliament, but Corbyn has been refusing to carry out that resolution, despite making claims about the party becoming more democratic under him.

His letter the other day offering a compromise Brexit has angered many who see it is as betrayal of the Six Tests and the Conference resolution.
Corbyn's dishonesty is frustrating too, but I still think this isn't the time.

May offered this exact deal, with no room for negotiation, from Europe months ago. She survived a VONC from her own party and in parliament over a month ago. Corbyn already didn't push for a second referendum. Now it's simply so late that the only reasonable option for Labour is to make some kind of compromise with the Tories that allows them to get any deal from the EU.

Given the political will going against a second referendum, or another avenue to remaining in the EU, putting a promise to "leave a second referendum on the table" in a party manifesto wa never going to be enough. Remainers needed to make it a policy they were willing to cut party ties over months ago.

Also Labour's six tests were never possible from the start. Even if they were in government negotiating with the EU, they would need to come down to essentially agreeing to the EU customs union with some minor face-saving concessions. I realize it's frustrating that leadership is basically admitting it was a pipe dream, but it was a pipe dream and once again the UK is so close to the cliff they need to find some political cover for not completely crashing out with no deal.
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Old 02-15-2019, 10:01 AM
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Well, it’s 15 February and no mass resignations over the Brexit chaos.

The whole Brexit mess is at a stalemate, I assume Theresa May will continue to run out the clock and ram her deal through at the end.
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Old 02-18-2019, 02:47 AM
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Sky News reporting that there will be an announcement by a group of Labour MPs about the future of a British politics. Are we finally seeing the split?
  #22  
Old 02-18-2019, 04:15 AM
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Sky News reporting that there will be an announcement by a group of Labour MPs about the future of a British politics. Are we finally seeing the split?
Seven Labour MPs just resigned from the party - they are going under the name The Independent Group.

Gavin Shuker, Angela Smith Ann Coffey, Mike Gapes, Chris Leslie, Luciana Berger, Chuka Umunna

Last edited by Baron Greenback; 02-18-2019 at 04:16 AM.
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Old 02-18-2019, 04:44 AM
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Interesting times - Ann Coffey is my local MP as it goes and is very solid here.
Some moderate voices to balance out the more polarising figures of Berger and Umunna.

Some good speeches that felt real, but not getting much of a bigger picture or vision of what the next steps are.
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Old 02-18-2019, 05:16 AM
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Will any Tories break? I notice they're not forming a new party but sitting as independents, perhaps to entice Tories.


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Old 02-18-2019, 05:18 AM
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Will any Tories break? I notice they're not forming a new party but sitting as independents, perhaps to entice Tories.
I imagine Anna Soubry's phone is currently very busy.
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Old 02-18-2019, 07:01 AM
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I imagine Anna Soubry's phone is currently very busy.
It would probably (sadly) be the end of her career if she did, Broxtowe is a marginal seat as it is and she's not particularly popular here. That said, I'd vote for her or any other member of this Independent Group over Tory or Labour at the moment.
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Old 02-18-2019, 12:07 PM
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I find it hilarious that the Corbyn Cult is demanding by elections for all seven. I’m not the only one on Twitter pointing out the irony of seeking a new election after two years to make they still have the confidence of the people.

Of course, a People’s Vote would be the exact same thing!
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Old 02-18-2019, 12:46 PM
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Gavin Shuker, Angela Smith Ann Coffey, Mike Gapes, Chris Leslie, Luciana Berger, Chuka Umunna
[Carnac the Magnificient]Name seven new candidates for the Democratic nomination.[/Carnac the Magnificent]
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Old 02-18-2019, 01:44 PM
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I imagine Anna Soubry's phone is currently very busy.

For such a prolific twitterer she's been rather quiet today.


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Old 02-19-2019, 05:30 PM
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Labour/Tory MPs may resign the whip on 14 February


Joan Ryan has quit Labour, making 7 become 8.


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Last edited by Malden Capell; 02-19-2019 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 02-20-2019, 05:15 AM
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And now three Tories have resigned and joined the Independent Group: Anna Soubry, Heidi Allen and Sarah Wollaston.

Just in time for Prime Ministers Questions!
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Old 02-20-2019, 05:29 AM
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BBC News link.

Pleased to see Soubry's joined them. Already seeing calls for her to resign and force a by-election, sadly, along with people saying the same about Chris Leslie. I think MPs have better thinsg to do right now than force unnecessary elections....
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Old 02-20-2019, 07:33 AM
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I’m not the only one on Twitter pointing out the irony of asking the MPs to stand for a new election two years after they were elected to make sure they still maintain the confidence of the people while the Leavers oppose a People’s Vote.
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Old 02-20-2019, 07:49 AM
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Putin sits backs, and watches with a smirk.
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Old 02-22-2019, 10:02 AM
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Another one gone: Ian Austin leaves Labour.

https://www.expressandstar.com/news/...-labour-party/

There’s a satirical Twitter account that had a great quote: the Labour Party, for the cult, not the many. Pretty much sums up Labour under Corbyn.
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Old 02-22-2019, 11:41 AM
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What is the "Black Country" referred to in the article, as the area he was representing?
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Old 02-22-2019, 12:38 PM
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What is the "Black Country" referred to in the article, as the area he was representing?


It’s a coal mining area historically. Nothing to do with race.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blackcountry/co..._feature.shtml
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Old 02-22-2019, 02:19 PM
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Who brought race into it? I just wanted to know what part of the country it was.
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Old 02-25-2019, 07:18 AM
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The Black Country is west of Birmingham towards Wolverhampton where was a coal seam very near the surface and gave rise to polluting heavy industry. I daresay it is somewhat lighter hued in these post industrial times. But the name lives on referring to the local culture and dialect. The boundaries of the Black Country are open to interpretation.
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Old 02-25-2019, 11:58 AM
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Labour now backs a second referendum. Obviously, there were many more defections yet to come. I don’t think Corbyn really gives a hoot about the EU, he’s far too interested in Israel and Venezuela rather than his own continent.
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Old 06-04-2019, 11:38 AM
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Well, that didn’t last long. 5 of the Change UK MPs have now left that group, I assume they’ll join the Lib Dem’s.
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Old 06-04-2019, 01:20 PM
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Well, that didnít last long. 5 of the Change UK MPs have now left that group, I assume theyíll join the Lib Demís.
The report I saw said they'll stay sitting as independents. I'm not sure that the Lib Dems would actually want them to join, at least some of the Change MPs are pretty unpopular in their constituencies.
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Old 06-09-2019, 08:35 PM
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I’m not linking to the Daily Mail, but they’re reporting that Umunna is going to stand for the Lib Dem’s.
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