Articles

When is an independent not an independent?

In police elections on November 18, 2012 by dadge

So, the people have spoken, and for the first time we have 41 Police Commissioners in England and Wales. Well, not many people have spoken, and some of those that did speak said some fairly unrepeatable things. This BBC clip is a fairly good summary of the whole sorry affair.

Considering the bias in the system in favour of party politicians, it was surprising and pleasing to see Independent candidates do so well. But one of the many questions that’s been raised in the post mortem on the elections is: How many of the Independents are true Independents? This was sparked by the revelation that Winston Roddick, the victor in North Wales, is a member of the Lib Dems. When I first heard this it sounded like Mr R had cheated, but in fact he was put in this position by his party, who decided not to field any candidates in Wales. So, in those circumstances, what was he to do? I suppose what he ought to have done is make his party affiliation a lot clearer in his literature. In his defence, it is clear from his CV that he isn’t really a politician, plus it’s very likely that some of the other “Independents” are members of political parties. But it still adds another worry to the endless list of faults with our democratic system.

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