Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Green Rebuttal

Yesterday, I got an e-mail from Councillor Matt Selwood, one of the parties I criticised in a post regarding one of the Greens' letters to students. It was exactly the sort of rebuttal or criticism you like to receive: reasonable and polite.

I don't intend to do a Newsweek and retract the entire story- because it was a rather gutting experience for us -but Matt said he'd be happy for me to post his reply, which I want to do in the interests of a fair right of reply:

Was browsing around the web tonight (avoiding revision, which is an art form in itself) and discovered a posting on your blog about the Oxford East result and, specifically, the letter sent to students by myself and Chris Williams. You basically accused me of deliberately lying to the electorate in that post. I can only assume (I hope!) that we haven't met, because I would hope if we had that you wouldn't come to that conclusion. I *honestly* believed that the argument in that letter was accurate - I was amazed that the LibDems got within 963 votes of unseating Andrew Smith. You may not be aware that I have a pretty sound record in opposing Smith - I was the City Councillor who proposed impeaching him for war crimes last year....:) His re-election caused me no pleasure at all.

Obviously, I would still have supported a Green Party candidate in Oxford East whatever, because I believe that the Greens are the only hope for progressive, principled politics in this country....but I wouldn't want you to think that either Chris or I deliberately misled people. Had I been able to foresee the result, I would not have used that argument - I would have urged people to vote for Jake Sanders simply on his merits, which are considerable. :)

Hope this straightens out some stuff, and proves that I can, at worst, only be accused of being a lousy predictor of election results...



P.S. Like the blog.

After exams, we're taking the debate to the pub.