So the Conservatives have been found with their fingers well and truly caught in the cookie jar. Today they have been fined by the Electoral Commision for misreporting / overspending on the last General Election. The nub of the offence was when is spending by the central party on the overall election campaign not spending on the overall campaign but rather on the individual constituency? The electoral commision has made a decision that the Conservative party made the wrong declarations and the Conservatives have agreed to pay the fine. Now by international standards the money involved is small and certainly not the ‘Huge Amounts’ that Channel Four news said on their evening broadcast. Nonetheless it makes the Conservatives look dodgy (some might say no suprise there) to say the least and at least 6 current MP’s may well be charged with election offences. (You can’t blame Channel Four news bit of hyperbole as they have shown the Conservatives to have broken the rules – as to whether they have broken election law will be for the courts to decide and of course it will be individual sitting MPs and their agents that will feel the force of this.)
I am sure that the other political parties are trying to make hay out of this, especially the SNP for their own politically justifiable reasons, but all the time there is one thing that they must really fear: Theresa May might use this as a justification to call an early General Election and you know what there is a very very good chance that she will increase her majority and thereby secure her own mandate to do what she likes. What does that say about the state of the opposition in this country and one party in particular? Nicola Murray indeed.