Saturday, 1 April 2017

Labour MEP's broadcasts do more harm than good

There was a rare appearance by Derek Vaughan on Radio Wales this morning. He was defending the place of Britain in a greater Europe. If I recall correctly, the last time he was on, he was arguing against Brexit.

Does he not see that by surfacing only when his own lucrative job in Brussels and Strasbourg is under threat he only strengthens the impression of Leavers that the EU benefits only those politicians on the gravy train? Considering that his office employs an assistant in South Wales, the dearth of information as to what MEPs in particular and the EU in general have done for Wales during his term is scandalous.

My own party is not blameless. While individual Libdem MEPs in England were very good at keeping their constituents informed regularly about events in the European Parliament, we did not nationally keep up a commentary on the EU as we did on the Westminster parliament (except in the early years of the coalition, but that is another story). The BBC neglected its duty to keep the British public informed about an institution that has an effect on our lives, and other players hostile to the European project rushed to fill the gap. Libdem campaigners would argue that the first call on limited funds must be to get Liberal Democrat MPs and councillors elected, but that does not mean that all campaigning funds should have been spent in that way. Business, too, was unaware of the danger of ignorance until it woke up on June 24th.

1 comment:

Stan said...

I've only just caught up with this post and I couldn't agree more about DV. His website is shocking with gaps of months on it even well before the EU referendum. He was in a position better than anyone to "sell" the EU to the people in Wales who put him there and on that he failed big time. He predictably got the job then hid behind a mountain of bureaucracy, losing all touch with the people who put him there. When the history of Brexit in Wales is written, if it's done properly people like Vaughan will get their share of the blame, not just their fat pensions.