Posted by: John | November 29, 2009

Iain Dale has lost the plot

On his blog about Zac Goldsmith he wrote:

There was lots of sanctimonious guff on Twitter from assorted lefties last night about the Sunday Times story that Zak Goldsmith is a ‘non dom’. They even tried to suggest that he should resign as a candidate or David Cameron should sack him. Er, on what grounds exactly? What law has he broken? Yup, that’s right, none. His tax status is a matter between him and the tax authorities. If they are satisfied with it, it’s rather difficult to see why Kerry McCarthy (for it is she) shouldn’t be. In any case, Goldsmith has decided to withdraw from ‘non dom’ status before the election so that’s rather spiked the guns of those who seek to do him down.

I’m afraid Iain doesn’t get it. The problem with this analysis is that it’s an extension of `It was done within the rules` meme that so bored the general public after they’d heard it a million times during the expenses scandal.

You know if I was a leaflet-writer for the Lib Dems in Richmond Park I’d be cracking open the champagne and doing a list entitled `how many ways to write about Zac’s tax status` and send them to EVERY Labour and Soft Con voter let alone Lib Dem and Green ones.

It doesn’t matter a jot to the ordinary person in Richmond whether or not he’s suddenly going to change his status. What matters is that he lacked the judgement or ethics to do so BEFORE it was revealed in the Times and thus he has put his own greedy agenda before those of public service.

Furthermore, people might conclude that having Zac Goldsmith as an MP and a potential government minister might mean that there was a limit in the scope that the Conservatives were prepared to see on non-dom tax. Thus, there would be a default to LOW non-dom taxes and that the whole internal Government debate on non-doms would be limited not comprehensive.

One other thing – can Liberal Democrats be a little less squeamish in attacking the Tories and actually USE Goldsmith on their leaflets? It doesn’t matter whether it’s Barnsley or Blaydon – Labour/Soft Labour/Soft Con/Green and our voters HATE these sort of people and you can be sure that the best way of causing havoc is for Goldsmith to be the laughing stock he deserves to be by talking about him in as many leaflets as possible.

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