by David Babbs Feb 11th, 2011
Several 38 Degrees members have been in touch to say that their MP has replied to them about the forest sell-off – not only saying they do support selling the forests but also describing 38 Degrees as “the Labour campaign website 38 Degrees”. So I am pasting below a copy of an email I just sent to Charlotte Leslie MP, one of the MPs to make this allegation.
It’s worrying that this seems to bepart of a firm response used by several different Conservative MPs – does that mean it’s a coordinated smear? Or do some MPs just seriously believe that the only reason to oppose forest selloffs is being part of the Labour Party? In any case, just to be clear – 38 Degrees is independent of all political parties.
If your MP has been in touch to claim that 38 Degrees is part of the Labour Party, please let us know and please get back to them to set them straight.
Several 38 Degrees members have forwarded emails from you in which you describe 38 Degrees as an “Labour campaign website”.
38 Degrees is independent of all political parties. 38 Degrees members are supporters of many different political parties, or none at all. The reason we are running a campaign against the government’s proposals to sell off public forests is because 38 Degrees members asked us to when we consulted them. You can read a lot more about 38 Degrees here: http://38degrees.org.uk/pages/about/
I understand that you strongly disagree with our stance on the issue of forests office, but I hope you will accept that it is possible to disagree with government policy without being part of the Labour Party. 38 Degrees has in the past campaigned against plenty of Labour Party policies – for example, when the Conservatives were in opposition, 38 Degrees members contacted their MPs asking them to vote in favour of a Conservative Opposition Day Motion calling for Parliament to support the 10:10 campaign. On that occasion, a couple Labour MPs accused 38 Degrees of being a Conservative organisation – I sent those MPs a message rather similar to this one!
I hope now I’ve been in touch to explain you will avoid sending inaccurate information about 38 Degrees to your constituents in the future. I’d be very happy to chat further about 38 Degrees if you would like to do so — my number is below.