Letters represent the views of their senders and may not necessarily accord with the views of 3W.
I strongly support a referendum on Europe, admire Goldsmith’s project and believe that the rapid emergence of the Referendum Party is a sign that large numbers of people are looking for a new, more representative politics.
That said, the RP’s roots are shallow, it is based on a single issue and has a wide variety of candidates, some more worthwhile than others. There is a danger of Third Way “putting all its eggs in one basket” or emulating the old left line of “vote Labour but organise”. I sense that after the next election there will be large numbers of people without a political home, and that these will include RP supporters, disaffected Green Party and UK Independence Party members, ‘small-c’ conservatives (‘One Nation’ but critical of the EU) and former Labour supporters of the libertarian socialist school (William Morris, Edward Carpenter, etc.) – and of course those of no party at all, including anti-road protesters, practitioners of DIY politics, pagans, travellers and others oppressed by the Criminal (In)Justice Act.
The Liberal Party (as opposed to the Lib Dems) has ideas very similar to Third Way, as have many Lib Dems who oppose the single currency and closer ties with Labour. Third Way should be reaching into all these camps. I am not sure that supporters of Third Way should be so strongly advised to vote for RP candidates – some might, when pushed to it, favour green issues.
Editorial comment :
The National Executive has to give clear advice to supporters. Factions within different parties support some of our ideals. We have to make an overall judgement which takes in both policy similarities and tactics. We still think the RP is the best bet to inflict damage on our corrupt establishment. At the end of the day, however, our advice is just that – advice. Each individual supporter must weigh the options for his or herself.