So what does Stephen Williams think of abstention?

9 12 2010

Lets see what Stephen Williams has said in the past:

January 2004 –

“Bristol West electors must be wondering what on earth to make of their MP’s voting record… Abstain, abstain, abstain. Not a very courageous stance. Bristol West needs an MP who can adequately represent the constituency and remain faithful to campaign promises.”

January 2004

In letter to Valerie Davey: “I think that most Bristol West electors will not see an abstention as a particularly courageous stance on your part.”

April 2004 –

“Thousands of students and parents will be wondering what on earth is the point of an MP who can’t take a stand on such a major issue.”

April 2005

Stephen Williams, prospective Lib Dem MP for Bristol West, said, “I think it is important that voters know how their MP has voted over the last eight years. She has ducked most of the tricky decisions completely”

Today 28 Lib Dems voted for the Government’s fees hike. 21 Voted against. 6 abstained. 1 of those was Stephen.


MASSIVE h/t Ben Mosley




11 responses

9 12 2010
Rosemary Chamberlin

Anyone who remembers 2005 and the streams of students pouring in to vote at the church on Hotwells Road will recognise “Students Votes are irrelevant” as the bollocks it is.

9 12 2010

I doubt there are many people who have shown such cynicism imagine not only doing exactly what you criticised the previous MP for doing and also the exact opposite of what you promised to do at two elections. It is beyond belief.

9 12 2010
Richard Leonard

Stephen Williams – so very, very average.

11 12 2010

If Williams aspires to be average, he’s going to have to pull his socks up.

On a scale of 0-10, I give him minus 2.

9 12 2010
Holding back the years « Working For the Clampdown

[…] LINK: see also […]

10 12 2010
Paul Bemmy Down

So where were the student demonstrators when New Labour introduced tuition fees after saying in their manifesto that they would not. And please don’t ask if I work for SW or any other political party because I don’t. I just recognise hypocracy when I see it!

10 12 2010

Paul I was against the introduction of tuition fees when the law was introduced. I also wasn’t a member of the Labour Party… because I was in sixth form college and doing normal teenage things.

It’s not hypocritical for me to highlight Stephen’s individual promise. It’s not hypocritical for me to highlight his individual criticism of abstention. It’s not hypocritical for me to highlight the fact that he has broken his promise by abstaining.

There were a great many student protests when tuition fees were introduced. I suspect they were not on this size nor this scale because coupled with an 80% cut to uni funding these cuts represent a massive privatisation of University education.

I’d go so far as to say the introduction of fees was a major factor in Valerie Davey ultimately losing her seat. Labour have been held to account over that action. Now so must Williams. Don’t you think that’s reasonable?

10 12 2010
Paul Bemmy Down

Darren. I think your answer is reasonable. The problem for you as a prospective politician is, one day you will find youself in a similar situation. Now you may fall on your sword, or you may not, only time will tell. What you will find is the idealism of youth fades into the realism of age. You will have to cope with that. As for SW, I agree with some of the things he writes and some I don’t. You can’t agree with everything one party stands for, you pick and choose, but you seem to have honed in on this one position which he has been forced into, and ignored all those things which I’m sure you can agree on. You probably don’t realise that we have protested on several subjects on the same side. I try to stick to the issues not which party supports them. It’s easier like that.

10 12 2010

Again please don’t think I’m criticising you or suggesting you have an axe to grind. I’m just debating the issue with Williams.

I agree that if the people of Bishopsworth elect me I may find myself in difficult situations in the future. I think the lesson I’ve learned from Mr. Williams is don’t promise the earth in order to get elected. Fate/karma/or just plain old fashioned hubris has a nasty way of kicking you in the backside.

I also like to think no matter how old I’ll tap my moral compass from time to time and make sure it’s still finding true north.

The one thing I strongly disagree with you on is this idea that Mr. Williams was “forced into” this position of abstention.

I think he was forced into not voting for the measure by the protestors but no one should be under any illusions Mr. Williams always backed his party’s attempts to jettison it’s old tuition fees position. Before he broke his 2010 pledge on fees he broke his 05 pledge on fees. As I blogged here

10 12 2010
12 12 2010
Paul Bemmy Down

Darren. I going to leave it there or you will think I’m trying to have the “last word”. When I see you about I’ll introduce myself. In the meantime I will continue to read your blog and will probably comment again.

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