Thursday, October 12, 2006

The perils of a slight majority

The Lib Dems got an unexpected flavour of their true predicament in the new Council on Tuesday.

They assumed that they would be able to change the Constitution at will (as per usual) as they wished to send the all-party Grants and Awards Panel into oblivion, keeping all say over major grants to the Voluntary Sector in the exclusive hands of the exclusively Liberal Democrat Executive.

One of their members didn't turn up and another went home early. The arithmetic was thus Lib Dems 23; Conservatives 21; Labour 2. The Conservatives and Labour voted together to preserve all-party involvement. One Lib Dem had a sufficiently open mind and strong conscience to abstain. So the vote was For the proposal 22; against 23; abstentions 1. And the mayor didn't even get to use her casting vote.

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