Thornton: I won’t give up my council seat


Lib Dem candidate Mike Thornton has revealed that if he won the by-election he would not give up his seat as a borough councillor representing Bishopstoke West.

The bookies  odds-on favourite to win Chris Huhne’s old seat was talking to journalists at the Ageas Bowl on Tuesday when Eastleigh News asked about his intentions If he should win.

“I would like to keep the seat because it helps you to keep in touch with your roots but if I did it would be inappropriate to keep the allowance the best thing would be to let it  be kept by the borough or give it to charity”

“I would like to keep the borough seat as long as I am able to  serve the people in my ward

“If they came to me and said “Mike you are neglecting us” I would have to think seriously about letting someone else run for it.”

Thornton added that he would give up his unpaid seat on Bishopstoke Parish Council.

The Lib Dem also described himself as a “fairly ordinary bloke” admitting “perhaps I’m a bit dull.”

Eastleigh News asked if he was disappointed that the election campaign seems to have descended into a planning row.

“I think it’s very important. I am proud of what we have done to protect green spaces but without a policy – a considered and responsible local planning policy –  all green spaces throughout the constituency will be at risk.”

“We are going to be providing houses for young people and 420 affordable houses just by building on that one golf course”

During a hustings event on Sunday Thornton had vowed to stand by the local plan “even if it makes me unpopular”.

  23 comments for “Thornton: I won’t give up my council seat

  1. February 21, 2013 at 1:44 am

    Trust me Mr Thornton, your, so called stance on “protecting green spaces”, has been rumbled and you will find that local people know you are being both dishonest and evasive, and that’s before you even become a MP. No sir, I think you will find that your deluded plan to say one thing but do another are the politics and policy of the past. Trying to ride that train just will not wash with local voters anymore, people have become very wise to the FibDem’s. The video of you refusing to support the Recreation ground from development and your public record on allowing building on green space will cost you any chance you may have thought you had at becoming Eastleigh’s MP. So my advice to you sir is this, “Go back to your Parish Council and prepare for disappointment..”

  2. February 21, 2013 at 8:41 am

    An MP who is also Borough Councillor….?
    It doesn’t sound practical.
    Or wise….

    Are there any precedents…?

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      February 21, 2013 at 8:46 am

      Pompey Lib Dem MP Mike Hancock I believe

    • February 21, 2013 at 9:59 am

      Yes, quite a few. For the MPs who have doubled-up in this way, it doesn’t seem to have done their popularity with their constituents any harm, which suggests to me that it works well for them.

      • mm
        Eastleigh Xpress
        February 22, 2013 at 8:31 am

        i can see it has advantages to it – it means the MP can have a direct input on local matters and it makes them very accessible – Mikes proposal to forego his members allowances is a noble gesture too but there are drawbacks. If your problem is with policy decisions taken by the Lib Dem council here in Eastleigh then who do you go to? Not your MP! Huhne was bad enough – very partisan in his representation. If your beef was with Theresa May’s dept or the Conservative led county council he would bend over backwards to help you. However if you were concerned about Lib Dem council plans to build on the allottments or a supermarket on your recreation ground then you were on your own.
        Also I feel there is far too much pluralism in local government as it is. Members who are parish, borough and county councillors get to vote on the same issue at different levels of government which makes a mockery of democracy IMO

    • Teriros
      February 26, 2013 at 11:42 pm

      Or democratic!!

  3. maureen
    February 21, 2013 at 9:44 am

    He’ll need to report in to get his orders, so won’t be cutting the strings.

  4. Keith
    February 21, 2013 at 9:52 am

    Here is someone standing as an MP who was minced by 17 year old students questioning him on the Lib Dem lies over tuition fees (as broadcast by Radio 4). This issue is not buried – it will come back to bite you.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      February 21, 2013 at 12:04 pm

      Oooo! Got a link?

  5. February 21, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Should we worry about a Borough Councillor having a place on the backbenches and easier access to Whitehall. Some might say that’s a good thing…?

    Or would Eastleigh be better served by an MP of a different party, or even an independent MP, who can say hang-on Eastleigh Borough Council, you’re being tw*ts again…?

    The electorate has to decide…!

  6. February 21, 2013 at 11:30 am

    “Or would Eastleigh be better served by an MP of a different party, or even an independent MP, who can say hang-on Eastleigh Borough Council, you’re being tw*ts again…?”

    Unfortunately, there are very few who do. Here in Newhaven, the LibDem MP Norman Baker, who is also a government minister, has recently criticised a highly unpopular planning decision by a Conservative led council to absolutely no effect.
    Mike Thornton could help his chances of becoming Eastleigh’s MP by pledging to waive his expenses and limit his allowances otherwise he may well remain a borough councillor.

  7. rigel
    February 21, 2013 at 10:18 pm

    welcome to all the out of town posters !
    I met Thornton today and he would be totally insignificant in westminster , he can be nice to the old dears but he has very little going on upstairs.

  8. renard
    February 22, 2013 at 12:24 am

    Like many, I will not vote for someone so dishonest as to constantly shout his opposition to building on green fields when in fact he votes for just that. Lib Dems are about to destroy countryside at Boorley Green, woods at Pilands (Bursledon), and wanted to build on prime agricultural land at Woodhouse Lane, Botley, effectively linking Hedge End / Botley / Boorley Green with concrete.
    I simply do not understand how any sensible person who cares about this borough can continue to support such hypocrites.

  9. February 22, 2013 at 9:20 pm

    Voting for Mike Thornton is voting for a man who believes in Devolution for Scotland, Wales and N/Ireland but believes that England should be destroyed and divided into 9 regions and ruled by unelected EU boffins,. most of the debt being payed back after the Labour party is coming from the English tax payers, who pay for prescription charges, hospital parking, THE TUITION fees selling of our infrastructure, NO do not vote for any of the Lab/Con/Lib parties lets give the only party that is concerned for the people of England, The English Democrats,.

  10. Alan Harris
    February 22, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    LiB Dems winning here – more like LiB Dems LYING HERE
    When will they actually tell the truth!!

  11. David Knowles
    February 23, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    I have just had the ‘Latest’ piece of dishonest Fib Dem literature put through my letterbox.I couldn’t believe it when I saw a picture of Mike Thornton with the headline ‘Protecting our local countryside’This after he voted to build on a greenfield site in Boorley green and his downright dishonest party wants to build on the green fields of North Stoneham.
    There is no limit to how dishonest the Fib Dems can be.The Fib dems are a Danger to the Countryside.Will you stop this dishonest campaign!

  12. February 23, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    He obviously doesn’t know how hard an MP has to work if he thinks he could be a borough councillor as well – more LibDem dual hatting. Jack of all trades, master of none.

  13. red devil
    February 25, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    After reading todays papers and the Lord Rennard affair Mike will not be going to Westminster after all. Anyone voting Lib Dem needs to see a head shrink ?

  14. K Wright
    February 26, 2013 at 1:18 am

    So, to the Eastleigh News, Mike Thornton is vowing to “stand by the Local Plan” but in a campaign leaflet on Friday 22nd to Bursledon and Old Netley residents he said that the Lib Dems are now “protecting EVERY site in Bursledon and the surrounding area from development for the next 20 years”, followed by another newspaper leaflet the next day showing a massive map of all the previously-to-be-built-on Bursledon area sites, now saying “the Lib Dem Council are protecting ALL this countryside”.
    I emailed Keith House, as Leader of the Borough Council (and also leader/chair of Bursledon Parish Council? – if so, seems a conflict of interest there!), on Friday and asked him to confirm that the areas in the “Bursledon” areas of the Local Plan are not now to be built on (and I listed all the codes from the Plan – BU1, BU2, BU7, BU8, etc, to avoid any misunderstanding by the Lib Dems on what I meant!!) – no reply yet (nothing till after the election ….??!!). Put a post on Mike Thornton’s Facebook page asking for urgent formal confirmation (no reply!). Have sent Mike Thornton a message on his Facebook page asking for formal confirmation, or clarification and a written apology to Bursledon & Old Netley residents by Wednesday at the latest if he has misled everyone (awaiting a reply…).
    If the Local Plan is being changed, why are we hearing about it as part of a “vote-for-me” campaign by the Lib Dems and not from the Council itself, being such a major contentious issue across the Borough?? Have similar statements been issued to other areas in the Borough about their sites in the Lib Dems’ Local Plan also being “saved” by the Lib Dems now??
    Can we believe anything the Lib Dems say now???

  15. Stuart Jebbitt
    February 26, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    Perhaps he needs to hold onto it ? (to come back to) He just doesn’t come across as MP material. He seems to be a bit of Jim Hacker type, a pleasant enough man I’m sure, but out of his depth – as demonstrated this afternoon when he got tackled on TV by an ex-policemen, on the Rennard issue.
    I wonder if secretly, he is simply a patsy in a plan to keep the seat warm in parliament, for Mr House to take over in 2015? or am I just very cynical?
    Whatever happens, I will be very pleased when we get to friday and we can have our town and our lives back.
    a lot depends on where the bulk of the tactical votes go on thursday….

  16. February 26, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    (Labour out of the race.)
    Labour chance to boot out the Lib Dems by voting UKIP.

  17. renard
    February 26, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    K Wright asks: Can we believe anything the Lib Dems say?

    Why ever not? They are such nice people, not like those other nasty parties. – Assuming, of course, we forget “I emphatically deny asking my wife to take my speeding points” and “I emphatically deny knowing anything about allegations against Lord Rennard” and “We are protecting the greenfields of the borough” . . .

    Yes, nice, trustworthy people!

  18. renard
    February 27, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    And this morning (Wednesday), we too have had the latest Thornton bumf through our overworked letterbox. The leaflet boldly proclaims the usual slogan about “Mike is protecting our green spaces”, with him alongside a beautiful area of green fields.
    It looks uncannily like the countryside at Boorley Green, where Thornton and his Lib Dems recently voted to build a huge housing estate!
    Or perhaps it’s part of Pylands Wood area, where the Lib Dems recently voted to build another estate and a through road on countryside.
    At least it’s not the farmland adjoining Woodhouse Lane, where the Lib Dems are desperate to build a really enormous estate, effectively linking Botley, Hedge End, Boorley Green and Fair Oak.
    And still people fall for their lies! Presumably, the Lib Dems work on the principle that if you shout a lie loud enough and often enough, at least some gullible fools will believe it.

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