Paddy is getting his knickers well and truly twisted about personal attacks on Nick Clegg in the AV referendum campaign.
There are two strange things about this: firstly Paddy has been around long enough to know that a high profile complaint that the campaign is about the personality of Nick Clegg, will just focus all the media comment on the referendum still further on the personality of Nick Clegg. Secondly, I really cannot find much evidence of these deeply personal attacks on Nick Clegg by the No campaign. Where are they? It is almost something they don’t have to say. Such is Mr Clegg’s reputation that “AV? Nick Clegg” (snigger) is enough to almost kill the Yes campaign. I wonder if my commenters can help identify these deeply personal and unfair attacks.
Actually, if Paddy had the sense to read this blog, he could have learnt six weeks ago that Clegg would cripple the Yes campaign. I can’t see why it is a shock. And if Clegg is that unpopular, perhaps he should ask why, on the day that three quarters of English universities confirmed they are charging £9,000 a year tuition fees.
I shall vote for AV. It is a little bit better than first past the post. John Reid and David Cameron are both against it, which is good enough for me. One day I hope we will get real reform to STV. AV is a very slight improvement – actually more equally sized constituencies will do more than AV to improve our democracy. That ploughs on despite intense New Labour opposition.
Meantime, what has happened to the coalition promise of a fully elected House of Lords, elected by STV? That is a genuinely liberal measure, which is doubtless why Clegg appears quietly to have jettisoned it.