Tuesday, 15 May 2012

What are the Independents in Powys?

I will leave it to Y cneifwr to explain the new arrangement in Carmarthenshire  which see Labour and Independents  reforming their alliance but see Labour's replacing the Independent Meryl Gravel as leader (Presumably Kevin Madge and once again excluding the largest party.Plaid Cymru.

The council alliances are coming together where there is no Party in overall control but Powys seems to be still in deadlock.

There's  an Interesting post  by Peter Black (yes really) on the complexities of the Independents he makes the comment....

As a party politician I have always been troubled by the concept of an independent, largely because I have never been clear what one is. Obviously, I would expect somebody who considers themselves to be an independent to avoid party whips, but surely that is not enough. What do they stand for? What are their politics and what values do they bring to policy decisions?

In a number of councils there may be a number of Independent groups or one clearly  large one. The practice of the BBC and others lumping them together doesn't help. The situation in Powys is even more  confusing because there are two large Independent groups Powys Independent Alliance and the Shires Independent Group.

According to the leader of the "Shires" group 
There are fundamental differences between the two independent groups as the electors were aware at the time of the election.

However if you were to look at the election results on the Powys Council website then  they appear to simply referred to as Independents  (though they are registered groups).

Only fifty  seats of the 73 available were contested in Powys at the local elections on 3 May, and the council is currently under no overall control..

The last council was run by a coalition of Powys Independent Alliance and the Liberal Democrats which strangely Peter Black neglects to inform us). Which leads to me to speculate that this group is made up largely of Liberal Democrats who do not wish to disclose their allegiance whilst the Shires group name leads me to suspect that they consist of closet Tories.

Of course it could be the other way round or they could both be filled with Labour or Plaid supporters.But who knows?

Of course I've met Labour,LibDem, Conservative and Plaid members who either disagree with ,or sometime have no idea what)  party policy is on a issue and simply vote as they are told to particularly  in the case of Labour. 

But usually you have some ideas not only where the individual candidate stands but of the Policies of his or her party and how this will affect how your council or government is run.

With Independents you may have an idea on their attitude to potholes or closing the local school but what about the fiscal policy how would they vote on cuts?

For those living in Powys who actually had a chance to vote  and nearly a quarter Wards they didn't it must have been confusing

Of course with such small wards they well have known their candidates and simply voted on their personalities it would have probably been harder to vote on their politics.

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