Letter: Labour has benefited from adopting Lib Dem policies

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The Independent Online
Sir: Your editorial (10 June) suggests that the Lib Dems should return to the minimalist radicalism of Gladstone. This philosophy may have distinguished Gladstone's Liberals from Disraeli's Tories, but in recent years it has become the preserve of the Conservative Party.

Another strand of Victorian Liberalism argues that democracy should not be a cloak for majority or minority tyranny, but a means of entrenching equal rights and duties. Unfortunately, the Labour Party thinks only in terms of political domination as its determination to maintain the over-representation of Scotland and Wales post-devolution makes clear. As long as this huge philosophical gap between the parties remains, defections such as that of Alec Kellaway will be 'just the bizarre behaviour of a maverick'.

Yours faithfully,

G. F. KEATING

Newcastle upon Tyne

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