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Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Lord Warner who wanted to charge people £10 to use the NHS resigns Labour whip.

Lord Warner resigns Labour whip, saying party is 'no longer credible'

Lord Warner, who wanted to charge people £10 to use the NHS, steps down


Before everyone gets too excited about Lord Warner (Lord who?) becoming the first Jeremy Corbyn era Labour parliamentarian to resign the whip, perhaps we might examine the background and “political” credentials of the now "new" cross bench peer. A career civil servant from 1960, the Life Peer held offices in the Blair government, being a Parliamentary Under Secretary in the Department of Health from 2003 to 2007, and a Minister of State in the department of Health from 2005 to 2007. he has also been “adviser” to a number of “consulting” companies.
He was appointed by the Coalition government as Chair of the Social Care Funding Commission in August 2010. This unelected and unaccountable civil servant has never been a Member of Parliament but has held office in the Blair and later Coalition administrations.
It could hardly be argued that Norman Reginald Warner, is a traditional Labour supporter (or even member) with roots firmly secured in the Trade Union movement, or the Co Operative movement or even the Fabian Society. He is clearly of the “Blairite” faction and in 2013 voted with the Conservatives in the House of Lords on proposed NHS regulations that would enable private companies to bid for almost all NHS services. He was the only Labour peer to do so. Since then his record has been patchy, but has indicated a continuing drift away from Labour towards the Liberal or even Conservative position. It is hardly surprising then that Warner should find the new new democratic Labour party, where policy and direction is set from the “bottom up”, to be contrary to his views of how the party should be run.
This “resignation” will of course, promote much comment and speculation in the media, where any event is immediately seized upon as the commencement of the disintegration of the Labour party. In fact the departure of Norman Reginald Warner, to sit on the “cross benches” rather than the Labour ones will not be of any great significance to anyone outside the media bubble. We all know that the media and television are past masters at creating mountains from molehills, but this time they have managed to create a molehill from a grain of sand