‘Honoured that you are writing my father’s biography’ the late Tony Benn, ‘...wonderfully written’ Hilary Benn

‘Sparkles with fascinating detail…a remarkable story of Liberal and Labour politics in the first half of the twentieth century.’ Michael Crick, Political Correspondent, Channel 4 News

‘Casts much light both on the evolution of British radicalism, and on the legacy which he bequeathed to his son, Tony. Professor Vernon Bogdanor, King's College, London

‘Brilliant biography…wonderful reading about the father and...discovering more about the son.’ Steve Richards of The Independent

‘Well-written and carefully researched, this fascinating biography brings to life a major figure in British political history…an excellent job of weaving together the strands of a complex life…as well as filling in the background of the Benn family’ Richard Doherty, military historian

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Centrifugal defections to UKIP and Mebyon Kernow

The latest drift of defections of local councillors seems to show a pattern of centrifugal force at work, with defectors being drawn outwards to the fringe political parties. This is shown in the latest defection of a Conservative councillor to UKIP in Skegness and the departure of a Liberal Democrat councillor to Mebyon Kernow, the Cornish devolution party. The Liberal Democrats are already a party of localism and represent many of the geographical fringes of the UK, so further travel in this direction could lead logically to Mebyon Kernow as the destination for dissatisfied Cornish Liberal Democrat councillors.

In terms of the national significance of the latest defections, the scale of the potential threat from Mebyon Kernow, Plaid Cymru or the SNP to the major national parties is geographically limited. However, a bandwagon of defections to the Greens or UKIP could be seen as more serious, as these parties can potentially gather strength from across the whole country.

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