April 18th, 2013

LISTEN: Clegg’s Recall Flip Flop

The Tory manifesto for 2010 was crystal clear: “Conservatives will empower local people to cast a vote of no confidence in their elected representative and bring an end to the concept of the ‘safe seat’.” As was the LibDem promise to “give people the power to sack corrupt MPs”. And, above all, the power of recall is enshrined in the Coalition Agreement:

“We will bring forward early legislation to introduce a power of recall, allowing voters to force a by-election where an MP is found to have engaged in serious wrongdoing and having had a petition calling for a by-election signed by 10% of his or her constituents.”

And still nothing. A point Zac Goldsmith made on Call Clegg this morning:

Clegg feebly “assures” us he will seek assurances that a debate will be had. No time frame, no realistic prospect of the public being given the power of recall any time soon. In the meantime, our MPs know we can’t touch them until 2015…

See also:


  1. 1
    LB says:

    First on the chopping block would be Lib dims who lied over tuition fees.

  2. 2
    Nick 'La Cucaracha' Clegg says:

    I am so terribly sorry.

  3. 3
    Pissed Off Pleb says:

    second would be all the Tories who promised to eliminate the bulk of the deficit by 2015, and didn’t have a mandate for Gay Marriage.

  4. 4
    Village Idiot says:

    Manifesto’s,pure fantasy,when will the voters ever learn???????

  5. 5
    It's bad enough says:

    it’s bad enough they wasted our money coming back last week to ‘discuss’ Thatcher and now they can’t even keep their promises..

    vote them all out

  6. 6
    Panem.et.circenses says:

    How does one recall all 650 of them at once?

  7. 7
    Nick Clegg says:

    But I said sorry about that.

  8. 8
    Dr Unc says:

    Err. Given both parties made broadly the same promise surely this is the fault of BOTH Clegg AND Cameron.

  9. 9
    Face the Facts says:

    “When we have a proposal from the government”
    Is he not part of government?
    As usual he is wriggling on the hook over his party being the most corrupt party at Westminster based on crimes relative to number of MP’s, and so should have the most recalls. Though if Eastlea is any guide they will simply follow tribal voting.

  10. 10
    Guy Falkes mark 2 says:

    We all know the answer to that.

  11. 11
    Bury Maggie from the news says:

    It is now time too do a ” MAggie. Shit or bust for this admin. You either show me you can really piss people off (only way to fix LAbours problem)

    Or burs?

  12. 12
    Madame Defarge says:

    The guillotine is far more effective. No prospect then of the corrupt fuckers crawling back at the next election.

  13. 13
    They're all smug, sneering, chip on both shoulders, Celt cu'nts at the BBC says:

    Meanwhile over at Radio Five cu’nt, reverential tributes are pouring in for Hillsborough mother Ann Williamson.

    Proof the cu’nts dont always gloat over the death of a mother.

  14. 14
    Brenda says:

    How does one tell them apart?

  15. 15
    stun says:

    “Seek assurances that a debate will be had?”. Surely, it is up to the government of which he is a part to come up with draft legislation first. Then debate it. Then call a vote on it. Not a fucking clue.

  16. 16
    John Tandy says:

    No change there then Guido ! The Limp Dems must continue to appear to be all things to all men in order to avoid a wipe out in 2015 !!

  17. 17
    Anonymous says:

    But we will “touch” them in 2015. It is now that the desperation seeps in. They need their safe seats as they have truly ignored the voters.

    Why is it that MP abuse their own constituents? Why not fix their own mistakes?

    For a party to have all of its dirty laundry out on show at the same time could be a disaster.

  18. 18
    Moussa Koussa Mark 8 says:

    Boo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo unemployment on the rise hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo inflation stubbornly high hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo IMF reports hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo UK downgraded hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo Austerity plan not working hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo nobody like me hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo another forgettable budget day hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo hoo boo hoo

  19. 19
    Moussa Koussa Mark 8 says:

    How is the cry baby this morning…..LOL

  20. 20
    M102 says:

    Nick Clegg talks shit shocker!

  21. 21
    Liar, liar, pants oh fire says says:

    Bring on Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sharon Stone and lets have a full TOTAL RECALL

    ps Clegg will never deliver this promise, he is just B**l S*****G politician

  22. 22

    As long as it’s not the godawful remake which looked like a steaming pile of shit.

  23. 23
    Moussa Koussa Mark 8 says:

    Oh Guido you are funny

    “””The Tory manifesto for 2010 was crystal clear”””

    Does that include the 40+ uturns, ie manifesto pledge breaks

  24. 24
    I didn't know Terry Wig-on was a Thatcher fan says:

  25. 25
    Maurice Minor says:

    Clegg is a Liar! Simple! If we had the recall system he’d be one of the first to go. Ask anyone in Sheffield.

    Much better idea, is if they had to wear exploding collars that could be triggered directly by the electorate via electronic polling stations.

    Or, a lie detector system that automatically euthanised them when mistruth was detected, or bowel gas was found to be being issued orally.

  26. 26
    JabbaTheCat says:

    I’ve been saying that about UKIP for years…

  27. 27
    Freebie Cherie says:

    How much did Cherie demand for attending the funeral? I’m assuming that’s why it cost £10 million?

  28. 28
    George Gallowsway says:

    Sir, I salute your courage, your strength, your indefatigability, and I want you to know that we are with you, hatta al-nasr, hatta al-nasr, hatta al-Quds

  29. 29
    Nick Clegg says:

    I don’t recall telling the truth

  30. 30
    Panem.et.circenses says:

    How is the learning disabilities chap this morning?

  31. 31
    Tuiitioon fees = teency weency bit more tax when earning mucho wonga says:

    Since when has doing the right thing been a beheading offence?

  32. 32
    Anonymous says:

    Most interesting. I finally received a response from my MP this week, on this very question.

    The response was about as encouraging as Clegg’s reply on radio. In essence, it says proposals are being kicked around between government and comittee by way of ‘report’.

    This was a commitment from both constituents of the coalition, this is their third year in power – and they are still talking about it!! Regardless of the delay, the recall powers that they are ‘discussing’ would be laughable were the subject not so serious – one demands a judicial decision, the other is at the discretion of – wait for it – MPs.

    FFS! That would have let all those expenses cheats nicely off the hook. So no change there. At least it’s (another) clear indication of whose interests that Cameron and Clegg are serving.

  33. 33
    sixupman says:

    The patronising prick: he started on the assumption that listeners did not understand the meaning of ‘Recall’, which took-up a goodly amount of time. Of course it was a filibuster, nothing else.

  34. 34
    Nad is mad with the BBC says:

  35. 35
    pisseed off voter says:

    credit where it’s due, at least he remembered it which, for a lib dem and Clegg in particular, is quite an achievement.

  36. 36
    The PrangWizard of England says:

    End fixed-term parliaments.

  37. 37
    Waco says:

    Anything Boston can do Texas can do bigger

  38. 38
    Moussa Koussa Mark 8 says:


    Dont mention

    Mark Harper Minister for Immigration, who has admitted that since the abolition of the UK border agency, the 120,000 back log of immigration cases has not been reduced. They have recategorised all the cases so it seems that 50,000 have been sorted…….shhhhhhhhhhh

  39. 39

    Having lost the Alternative Vote referendum in 2011 it appears as if Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats will not be supporting any other type of electoral reform in this parliament.

  40. 40
    Bollocks to getting a pseudonym says:

    And these people are supposed to be adults. The kids in my local kindergarten are more grown-up.

  41. 41
    Jay says:

    The problem with having an “all or nothing” recall mechanism is that it could destabilise government, pure and simple.

    Just imagine (as someone has pointed out above) that Labour or UKIP had started a recall campaign in marginal LibDem constitutencies following the tuition fees vote. Or that Labour had started a similar campaign in marginal Tory constitutencies following the welfare changes. Not only could this lead to a great number of by-elections, which, in turn, might lead to a general election every other year. There is also a real danger that MPs would simply reject bills or reforms which didn’t play well with their voters.

    But an important part of our parliamentary system is that MPs sometimes vote for unpopular measures and reforms. And that is very important. The big advantage (and some might say, the biggest flaw) of our FPTP electoral system is that the governing party (or, currently, parties) can push reforms through even though they are unpopular. There is no need to water down reforms with a host of lobby groups or small parties.

    Since we are talking about Thatcher these days: Just imagine we had had such a recall system during her days (she was deeply unpopular in between elections – people tend to forget that). Would she have been able to transform Britain as she did? I very much doubt it.

  42. 42
    They hate her because she won says:

    The truth – Liverpool fans pushed their way into the ground killing 96 of their own, aided and abetted by incompetent police management and poor first aid.
    The fantasy that is now the official truth – innocent Liverpool fans, every one of them sober and in possession of a ticket, were forcibly pushed into pens and crushed to death by the police and left to die.
    They know who they are.

  43. 43
    The mummy returns says:

    George,your left eye looked droopy in your appearance,in the HoC….

  44. 44
    Village Idiot says:

    I liked Nads in the HoC,when she reminded Mr Skinner,working class,who does not
    speak for me,that “Maggie” was only yards away,he did tone it down a bit..

  45. 45
    Anonymous says:

    Problem is that currently and in proposed change it is determined by MPs, and therein lies the problem. As evidenced most clearly, in recent times, by Bercow and Martin , among many, MPs look after their own – at the expense (pun intended) of the electorate.

  46. 46
    Personifesto says:

    Waffle waffle not subject to legitimate expectation waffle waffle….

  47. 47
    Personifesto says:

    Why not simply leave it that if an MP is “recalled” and asked to leave, the constituency has to make do without an MP until the next election. ould that honestly make much difference to the day to day life of the place?

  48. 48
    Personifesto says:


  49. 49
    Only saying says:

    Bit tough on old Handy then.

  50. 50
    FlipC says:

    But why not just limit a non-provisional recall to 2 years after an election (or at any time for serious wrong-doing) and state that the petition has to be equal to that of the original winning party’s voters?

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