Saturday, 18 February 2012

Cowan: We'll be out for Boris

Labour will be out campaigning for Boris in Hammersmith & Fulham according to ... well ... nobody actually. An embarassing slip of the tongue from Labour Opposition Leader Stephen Cowan has surfaced from the full council meeting which took place on January 25th this year.

Local Tories have jumped on the opportunity to poke fun and have released the recording which you can listen to above. What is more amusing than anything is that Mr Cowan really bellows the word out before he can stop himself, it is quite funny..

What it also raises for me, though, is two things - one just an observation and another a more interesting question. First listen to the huffing, guffawing and table thumping Mr Cowan gets from the delighted Tories, it sounds like a football crowd that are, er, fully refreshed. Such is the culture of local politics.

Secondly, I suspect that a local Conservative recorded the footage which you can now hear. Which is interesting - because every time I have been to a Council meeting for this blog the meeting has started with dire warnings from the Mayor about how if anybody is caught recording anything they will be slung out by the beefy security men that stand by the doors.

No recording allowed. No sound. No video. NOTHING. Understood?

But now it seems the Council has decided to put all recordings on their website. Which is convenient.

POSTCRIPT - In fact, I've just been told proudly by a local Conservative that the Council places sound recordings of these meetings on their website which you can listen to here. It's a committment to transparency apparently. All good stuff - but as you'll notice from this screengrab from the Council's website the recording of the 25th January 2012 in which Mr Cowan made his gaffe is not yet on the Council's website - but it is being used by local Conservatives on YouTube for party political advantage. So that's how it works. They will of course thank me for bringing that fact to your attention - all in the name of transparency.

I wonder whether the Council's website will now be speedily updated.

1315 UPDATE - The local Councillor who has been pushing CowanGate on YouTube, Peter Graham, has been in touch to point out that actually the recording is on the Council's website - if you know where to look. It's not with the rest in the main section but squirelled away as a link on the agenda of the meeting. You can see it here.I think my point still stands!

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