Camden: LibDem defects to the Tories
A sad tale - Havard Hughes a former LibDem Brent councillor, long term member of the London Region executive and Camden's local party secretary has defected to the Tories.
Don't normally comment on defections but this one struck a deep cord. After being a LibDem for so long he finally WALKED after being shafted.
Most grassroots members follow the pecking order and don't really know how the wheels of power really work. It's a dirty game.
Mark Valladares has mentioned the London Regions side when the Chair Sean Hooker asked Havard to run as secretary against him. There's a master schemer on the Regional executive who stuck the knife in against him. The Chair's plot didn't work leaving an embarrassed Havard. But that's only part of it.
Having moved to Camden from Brent, Havard tried to make inroads but he came unstuck attempting to run for Chair against a popular incumbent. He should have waited until the legal term had expired and not gone in headlong before local members were more familiar with him. The final straw came when he applied as a candidate for Holborn and St Pancras. He only got a few first preference votes. Considering the amount of work he put in, it was a disappointing result for him. Since then he's gone to ground.
Only recently there was a comment spotted on Peter Black AM's blog that he had applied for the Tory PPC seat in Swansea West after joining the Conservatives.
That's when the shit hit the fan. Why the Tories is the question. Well in Camden the Tories share the power with the LibDems. Havard is a natural progressive political animal who works for the Electoral Reform Society and if not the LibDems, the Conservatives are a natural home for him. This week his resignation from the LibDems became public knowledge. It's rumoured that certain bods on the region are so annoyed they are looking to expel him so he can't rejoin the party at a later date.
Update: Over a coffee with one of the Councilors, was asked why I'd left out the final straw in my post. I wasn't sure at the time whether to mention it but what the heck. Apparently at the after selection thank you party, Havard's partner, a British muslim, asked why no halal food. The sick response, even if it was meant as a sarky joke, is not really printable. She resigned from the Libdems immediately. Can't really say I blame her. Would take a thick skin to ignore such an obvious racial slur and 'dirty' remarks about their relationship. The heated row this caused came to nothing. One would have expected an apology and at least a local party suspension. Havard is an upstanding guy - the whole fiasco was the final nail in the coffin.