One might hope the role of the monarchy in the prorogation plot, and then Theresa May’s cronies getting honours in her resignation list, might do enough to undermine public confidence in some of the systems that define the British establishment. But the honours list will shortly be further devalued by political muck as Jo Swinson’s office is proffering peerages and knighthoods in the dissolution honours to candidates and their constituency chairmen in winnable seats, if they are willing to make way for Blairite entryists like Chuka Umunna and Luciana Berger.
The difficulty is that a Lib Dem candidate in South West London or South West England has a very good chance of becoming an MP in the next election. It is not obvious to many why they should make way for a right wing war hawk with no connection to liberalism who has only just joined the party. Swinson sees the certainty of the Lords in exchange for a prospect of the Commons as a fair offer. Many ordinary party members would see this as beyond words sordid.
One person not being offered a peerage is Clareine Enderby, the Lib Dem candidate for the normally no LibDem hope seat of Finchley and Golders Green. There has been massive media speculation that she will stand down for Luciana Berger to replace her, and to be fair, Ms Enderby has been making plain that, so far as she is concerned, there is no vacancy.
As the Jewish Chronicle points out, it is by no means certain that Berger would want to stand in Finchley as opposed to a more normally winnable Lib Dem target, if Swinson can promise to boot an incumbent candidate into the Lords to make way for her.
The entire shenanigans leave an extremely bad taste in the mouth. Abuse of the honours system and pandering to the desires of the most unprincipled career politicians in the country are just the start of it. The Blairites repeatedly justified their hostility to Corbyn by saying that they had a personal mandate from their constituents. Yet at the first opportunity they are running like rabbits from the judgement of their constituents in the hope of finding more malleable ones.
If Ms Enderby is indeed replaced by Luciana Berger she will be a victim of racism, as the sole grounds on which Ms Berger is being touted as preferable for that particular constituency is her ethnicity. Victims of racism do not always themselves wish to complain due to societal or personal pressures. But I should certainly be entering a formal complaint about it.
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