Politicians get a lot of grief – in many cases, because they have said one thing and then done another. The Lib Dems, in particular, got into sticky water with the electorate over Tuition Fees (which we still want to get rid of as a party, but it is just not affordable at the moment).
However, when a politician engages in downright deception – as was the case yesterday of Derby Conservative council candidate Ashley Waterhouse, it is understandable when the electorate refuses to engage in the democratic process. I have lost count of the number of times someone has said to me “You politicians are all the same”, despite me never having been elected to a political position!
Ashley Waterhouse’s deception has been publicly uncovered in the worst possible way, on BBC Radio Derby, when he tried to participate in a telephone phone in during the station’s breakfast show. You can listen here. His voice and phone number were recognised by the BBC and it was put to him he was, in fact, not “Paul from Normanton” but a local election candidate representing the Derby South Conservative Association. He repeatedly denied who he was, on air.
Mr Waterhouse has now recorded an embarrassing interview, which I believe all politicians and budding/future elected members should listen to.
If you lie, you will be found out by the electorate. You will be embarrassed, you will damage your party and worst of all you risk turning voters away from the democratic process.
Honesty IS the best policy and that’s why you will only ever get the truth from me and my colleagues in Salford Liberal Democrats. Sometimes, it will hurt to tell the truth (see my earlier paragraph about tuition fees!) but when we are asking our neighbours to vote for us, it’s the right thing to do.