Wednesday, 9 May 2012
A Disconcerting Alliance
As a young woman I believed politicians were elected on their promise of working for the good of their electorates. How naive I must have been in those days.
Since last Thursday's local elections some strange coalitions have arisen from the wheeling and dealing behind closed doors. East Lothian Labour have decided the Tories are their best friends, (although they seem rather reluctant to admit it) and the good people of East Lothian will now be governed by a Labour/Tory coalition. Only time will tell how successful that arrangement will be but I would think the decision will not be cheerfully accepted by many voters of either party.
But, so far, the biggest shock to many must be the announcement that Labour and the SNP will form a coalition to run Edinburgh for the next five years. Labour group leader Andrew Burns will become council leader with the SNP's Steve Cardownie - once a Labour man himself until he defected in 2005 - as his deputy. Labour will also choose the Lord Provost.
I have yet to decide if this is a clever or foolish move by the SNP. Several of my Edinburgh friends are angry because they feel they have been betrayed. How can the SNP get into bed with Labour when it was Labour who forced through the trams? That appears to have been the major local issue because the years of disruption to the city has effected nearly everyone in some way.
On Newsnicht, Steve Cardownie insisted Labour and the SNP have much common ground on policies yet it was reported earlier that the SNP had initially made 'some fairly serious offers' to the Tories.
Will being in coalition with Labour help or hinder the SNP's chances for a yes vote in the referendum? Only time will tell, but this decision in Edinburgh has me believing the politicians are far more interested in acquiring power than they are about representing their electorate.