New Times,
New Thinking.

20 May 2010

How the Lib Dems walked away from Labour

Contrary to myth, the “progressive alliance” could have worked. But Lib Dem leaders were simply not

By James Macintyre

As the Liberal Democrats seal their fate with the Tories and publish a joint programme for government today, it is worth remembering what might have been.

Conventional wisdom has it that a Labour-Liberal based alliance was impossible. But that is not accurate. The Lib Dems actively chose — and possibly as early as the day after the election — to go with the Tories. And, according to one senior Labour figure, they then “lied” about their reasons for doing so.

You can read the story of how the Lib Dems walked away here.

UPDATE: In response to the publication of the Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition’s “Programme for Government”, Ruth Davis, senior political adviser to Greenpeace UK, says: “The coalition’s commitment to push forward the international process is encouraging, but on most of the environmental issues mentioned here, we still don’t have the all-important numbers. Until we know the size of the green jobs programme, for example, or how tough the standards will be for emissions from coal plants, we can’t be certain whether blue and yellow really does make green.”

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