Friday, May 11, 2007

Lib Dems and SNP Agree Coalition

But don't get too excited... it's for Edinburgh City Chambers, rather than the Holyrood Chamber. However, it does mean that Labour is out of office in Edinburgh for the first time since 1984.

A lot has changed since then, most of it for the better, even if some things have happened in spite of the varous councils rather than because of them. However, Labour has been dining out on Council ventures like the Gyle Centre, the EICC, the Festival Theatre and the Exchange financial district, for far too long now. The glory days were the best part of a decade ago, and since then, a smug, complacent, 'we ken best' mentality has been allowed to set in, particularly over transport, which I can't say I'll be sad to see the back of.

So the capital, along with East and West Lothian, becomes yet another Labour citadel to fall. At this rate, they might not even be left in charge of COSLA. Now that would represent a new broom indeed!


Indygal said...

A week has passed and even to those of us who were heavily involved, it's only just sinking in what's happened. Labour only has overall control of TWO councils now. It's fantastic news. And for us to be sharing power in the capital city, what a huge step forward Richard.

Richard Thomson said...

Agreed, but I hope folk realise that it's not just about getting feet under desks and showing everyone what a good bunch of chaps we are really. There's a whole host of stables in Scottish public life which could do with some serious mucking out!

Richard Havers said...

Down here in the Borders we have a damn fool silly Tory, LibDem & Independent coalition.

I'm really gutted Aileen Orr didn't get in. Despite not being an SNP supporter she'd have done a brilliant job.

Richard Thomson said...

Winning Roxburgh & Berwickshire was always going to be a big ask for the SNP, at least this time round. Aileen has a lot to offer, though, and she did manage to increase the SNP vote in a tight contest, which is more than I managed when I stood next door in Tweeddale, away back in 2001.

Leaving just 6 opposition (SNP) members in the Borders seems a strange move, especially when either combination of Con/LD or Con/Ind would have taken any group over the magic figure of 17/34 councillors. Could it be that the Tories wanted Dave Parker back as council leader, but didn't feel they could always rely on the rest of the Independents to back the adminstration?

If not, then I fail to see what the Lib Dems bring to the party, especially when the Tories must be looking to eat back into the Lib Dem vote. That job is going to be a lot harder now that they share credit and blame equally for everything that happens at SBC level.

Anonymous said...

The Lib Dems in Edinburgh are a lot more amenable because Tavish doesn't hold any great sway over them.

No doubt they'll be the first to ask questions about why Tavish, on a one man operation, has shut them out of government in Edinburgh by even refusing to speak to the SNP when the SNP has made no demands of them.

When they join the dots to who was running their campaign and continually muddying Nicol's positive messages by jumping in with negative ones about the SNP they'll find it leads to Tavish who has taken them up the blind alley of back bench anonymity to protect himself from immediate post-election criticism.

However it won't last long as they will eventually ask questions and one thing's for sure. Whatever decision they make in the next couple of years Tavish will be on the back benches.

Caron said...

I was really pleased to see this deal. I think it can take Edinburgh forward well.

Now, there was a bit of an insurmountable obstacle here - the trams, which the Lib Dems support and the SNP oppose. They kept this outwith the deal and agreed to differ.

I wonder if anyone could possibly learn any lessons from this pragmatic attitude:=)

Richard Thomson said...

Who could you possibly have in mind, Caron? Do you think it might result in an outbreak of Tavish, sorry, lavish, goodwill? ;-)

Caron said...

I was rather more thinking of Alex:-)