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Signing nomination papers for a candidate in no way indicates support for a candidates views, it is just supporting the democratic right for a member of a legal party registered with the electoral commission to take part in an election.

It is a highly respectable act to sign papers of a rival candidate. This shows you have trust in the electoral process and that you can beat your rival using alternative policies and persuading voters.

The slimey Francis Maude obviously prefers to try and obstruct people from taking part in democratic process, a very sneaky fascist tactic.

But this comes as no suprise, after all this is the man who chickened out of a public debate in Horsham with Nick Griffin BNP, despite the fact locals had pledged ££££s to charity if the head to head took place.

He obviously thinks by not debating with them and obstructing them from taking part in democracy they will go away. Pigs might fly.

How Pathetic!

Where's this on the BBC compared to Dyke!?

Much as I think Miss Golightly sounds like a bit of fascist, I am inclined to agree with her. Signing an opponents nomination papers is, as she says, a respectable thing to do. Maude is a liability to the party, just too darned wet and PC by half. Likes to think he's a bit of a cool metropolitan liberal trendy and frightfully streetwise. That sort of thing. DC should consider him for the boot.

The Liberals dont stand when the BNP have a good chance of winning because they know they will split the Labour vote, possibly letting the BNP.

No great choice then for voters though.

Can they put Maude back in his box....that must have been his contribution to the upcoming elections

This post is not relevant. What was Maude's role in the Dyke affair?

The Lib Dem councillor's action seems odd. But does Francis Maude have to behave like the school sneak running to Ming Campbell? Is he so desparate to prove his anti-racist credentials that he has to make a fuss about a trivial incident?

I would say the only problem that there should be is that one party's member has signed the nomination papers of a prospective candidate for another party.

That in itself is pure stupidity, how many Tory councillors sign the nomination papers of labour candidates. Surely he should be disciplined for that.

Now it being a BNP candidate so what ? This is a democracy and as the BNP are a democratic party they have every right to stand.

"The Conservative Party Chairman Francis Maude has called on the Liberal Democrats to prove their anti-racist credentials by sacking a local councillor who nominated a BNP member as a candidate for the May elections"

or

Proper Conservatives have called on the party leader to prove his anti-socialism credentials by sacking the Conservative Party chairman who nominated a Lab/Lib-donating lefty for the London Mayor election.

I find the notion that any professional politician would sign an opponent's nomination papers to be baffling, not a " highly respectable act".

I imagine if Francis Maude had signed off on a Labour councillor's paperwork the froth and bile here on CH.com would reach tsunamic proportions.

But most of all I feel uneasy about comments along the lines of "it's just the BNP acting like democrats, so let's not be beastly to them."

Comforting the BNP to discomfort the Party Chairman (my enemy's enemy is my friend) is pretty bloody shoddy - this isn't the Middle East.

The Liberals dont stand when the BNP have a good chance of winning because they know they will split the Labour vote, possibly letting the BNP.

Indeed. I'm not sure how good a policy this is. The theory and intentions behind it are 100% sound, but in practice some of the BNP votes are simply working class voters who want to vote against an incumbant Labour council (eg Barking and Dagenham). Most of them would rather cut off their nose than vote Tory and have no other options available.

Of course a 1st/2nd preference system would solve this in a heartbeat.

I agree with Don J. Francis Maude has clearly done the right thing here.

Editor,

Yes your right Maude jumped on that back wagon and has ridden it for all he is worth.

Why can't he stand up in a face to face debate with the BNP ?

Maude has certainly got this one right. I don't know if there was ever a tradition in the past of signing opponent's nomination papers but I've never heard of it before. To do it for a BNP candidate is unbelievable. Was it so the Lib Dems could whisper to the racist voter, "trust us, we even signed the nomination of the BNP candidate"? This does nothing to dispel the notion that the Lib Dems will pose as whatever the local electorate seems to want and to hell with any supposed principles.

Hmmm I personally know of one Conservative Councillor who signed a LibDem candidate's nomination papers at last year's local elections and more recently of a Conservative Councillor who has twice now voted in support of BNP motions in his Council.So where exactly does that leave us, since I don't see or hear Maude doing anything about them, and he damn well should.

I would rather have the BNP than Maude anyday

He will have been automatically suspended for supporting another political party if I read the Lib Dem constitution correctly.

So What is someone signs a BNP registration paper?
The BNP is a legitimate political party, which, if Cameron doesn't start to get real on Europe and immigration I will, as a paid up member of the Tory party, be voting for.
I was so annoyed at Cameron who told people if you don't Vote Conservative, vote for any other party except the BNP. He should have been encouraging people to vote Conservative, not any other party!
I was livid, Cameron should remember that we are a democracy and people can vote for any party they believe in. I actually wrote to him and complained about his lack of democratic principles, his reply was not worth the paper it was written on!
This man Cameron is a washout and before it gets too late, he needs replacing by the likes of Haigh or Davis! Alwood.

So What is someone signs a BNP registration paper?
The BNP is a legitimate political party, which, if Cameron doesn't start to get real on Europe and immigration I will, as a paid up member of the Tory party, be voting for.
I was so annoyed at Cameron who told people if you don't Vote Conservative, vote for any other party except the BNP. He should have been encouraging people to vote Conservative, not any other party!
I was livid, Cameron should remember that we are a democracy and people can vote for any party they believe in. I actually wrote to him and complained about his lack of democratic principles, his reply was not worth the paper it was written on!
This man Cameron is a washout and before it gets too late, he needs replacing by the likes of Haigh or Davis! Alwood.

Turns out the poor bugger was asked to sign by his wife on behalf of someone she knew locally who said they wanted to stand as an Independent. He's been foolish but I don't think this had any malicious intent. All very unfortunate.

How does this "offence" rate alongside open primaries ?

Inamicus,

That is the weakest excuse I have ever heard. When you are in such a position you check what you are signing.

It is an excuse, the same sort of poor excuse that any of the three parties are for an excuse to be a democratic alternative.

At best this guy's been an idiot, at worst a tacit BNP supporter. It's an obvious opportunity to embarrass the Limp Dims so why not?

What's perhaps of more relevance is the number of people who vote for or not against the BNP.

For example, one of our own PPCs in a target seat in the north west didn't bother to vote at all in a local election in which the BNP eventually polled more votes that the Conservatives!!

Dear God, i know the LDems are a bunch of scurrilous odd-balls but this verges on the unbelievable! But then again , i was watching the re-run of the 1992 GE on BBC Parliament and watching Nigel Jones' not too convincing answers to the BBC reporter asking him whether there was a 'racial element' to the LDems campaign in Cheltenham, i should not be surprised...


I thought this story more funny than sinister. Obviously, the Lib Dem councillor has been a prat, but I suspect, an innocent prat, rather than a closet BNP supporter.

Some of the people on this site clearly have more hatred towards the Party Chairman than the British National Party. Sad, but unsurprising!

Anyone who has ever had the wretched job of collecting council election nomination forms would feel a twinge of sympathy for Cllr Jones. I've often been reduced to wandering round the East End just knocking on doors in wards where we (then) had no members - electors generally respond when you tell them that it doesn't commit them to voting for your chap and unless they sign then there won't be a contested election. You never quite know who's signed the form for you, and perhaps you don't always ask.

That said, there is a difference between asking Joe Public to sign your form and signing someone else's. I have to agree with Sean Fear on this (as so many other issues) - you'd have to have a heart of stone not to laugh. Arguably, it would be funnier if Cllr Jones was in the Greens, but I'll settle for a Lib Dem, and the fact that he was group leader is a definite bonus. What a prat.

No objections to Francis Maude's handling of this. When you're presented with an open goal, kick the ball at it. That's what he's there for, remember?

Comstock - "Of course a 1st/2nd preference system would solve this in a heartbeat."

Spot on.

Maude can usually be relied on to do the wrong thing, but the biggest criticism surely should be reserved for Cameron for keeping him as Party Chairman.

Hello
Well said
Anyway, I felt it was about time I posted

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