MERCIA (DM) – The Whyatt administration in Mercia was thrown into jeopardy this evening as a vote of no confidence, brought by Deputy First Minister Baron von Uberquie in a stunning turn of events, was called.
The vote – the second of its kind to be called in this term, the first being called in the government of Earl Eden (notable for being the shortest ministry in Mercian history), though both were called by Baron von Uberquie – has proven heavily divisive along both partisan and cabinet lines. Deputy First Minister von Uberquie is the most obvious candidate to consider in terms of defecting votes, but rumours are circulating that, outside of Baron Whyatt’s inner circle, this may not be the only source of dissent. The rumours are, as yet, mostly unsubstantiated.
The motion as brought by Baron von Uberquie attempted to couch his opposition to Whyatt’s premiership in language that would be amenable to government members, perhaps in an effort to put out an olive branch to PDP loyalists:
“The last three months of this Mercian Government has been tremendously positive and tremendously negative. Many aspects have been fruitful and many fruitless. While I felt, three months ago, that the coalition government was a working government – many problems have arisen since then which I feel need be rectified going into the upcoming General Election. My hands are not tied as I make this proclomation, I feel that the coalition is stable but it’s Leadership is no longer effective at keeping restrain and order over the cabinet and something needs to be done to make an example of this defection. Therefore, while I maintain the fullest confidence in much of the current cabinet, I motion a vote of no confidence in the Premiership of Baron Whyatt. I hope the cabinet and the opposition shall vote with me to replace the First Minister as soon as possible to maintain order until the General Election.”
He went on to give a statement to this newspaper in his capacity as General Secretary of the Green Socialist Party: “I made the decision to motion a vote of no confidence against the First Minister out of my duty to the Mercian citizenry. From a first hand, I can see an absence of proper administrative procedure from much of the cabinet and would prefer to see a change in Leadership.” He then went on to clarify who he thought this leadership could be: “As a general election is coming very soon, as Parliament dissolves in mid-september, I feel I can lead Mercia for the short time during this term to finalise any current plans and slowly build towards a new administration dependant on the results of the General Election. I am positive that this movement shall only help Mercia in the short and long term, for a good general election to be organised under my tenure. I am more than happy to serve Mercia in any capacity and know, while I risk my position – the decision was for the greater good. Bless Mercia.”
The parliamentary session itself was charged in the extreme: Leader of the Opposition Earl Horatio Eden, following the opening statement of the motion by the Deputy First Minister, gave his own speech to open the Opposition’s case against the government:
“Count Speaker, allow me to reiterate the Baron von Uberquie’s prior statement – the First Minister’s entire policy – that of being not the NLP and not as inactive as we supposedly are, and yet has spent the entirety of his premiership doing exactly what he has spent so much time opposing.
Count Speaker, Baron Whyatt has failed to retain order over his side of parliament, his government has been unable to put through its legislative agenda, and to put salt into the wound, he has appointed an MP with a dubious history and the most poor attendance record of anyone in Parliament as the head of the foreign service. With respect to present company, our domestic and foreign affairs cannot survive under a Whyatt premiership. At least under the leadership of the Baron von Uberquie, this House can start to have something approaching a legislative agenda.”
Foreign Minister Ned Greiner (the only pro-Whyatt MP present at the session) opened his defense of the government by insisting that attempting to hold a VoNC without the First Minister himself present would be tantamount to a coup. The Count Speaker ordered him to withdraw this reference.
The defense itself was objectively lacklustre: it primarily sat upon two key premises, the first that “Baron Whyatt is a good man”, in the Foreign Minister’s words, and the second, that “I believe that he will come back… Just give him one more chance, don’t hold a vote of no confidence against him”. He also struck back at the Leader of the Opposition’s claim that he was of dubious history.
The full statement follows:
“Well, Baron Whyatt is a good man. One of the problems recently has been the fact that he hasn’t had much time to do what he wants to. Very soon, I believe that he will come back into activity. Just give him one last chance, don’t hold a vote of no confidence against him. Also, having me become an MP wasn’t Alejandro’s fault. It was a democratic vote, and people chose me over Silvia [reference to the by-election which put Foreign Minister Greiner into Parliament, beating GSP candidate Sophia Albina and Bishop Draxe]. Blame the PDP, not Alejandro. Also, what is this “dubious history?” And Baron Eden [sic.: Earl is actual title], are you talking about the Kenspiracy, because, if that is the case, you’ve actually hurt my feelings. And you also do realize that I went on vacation, right?”
Earl Eden’s riposte followed immediately:
“Much obliged. First of all, Count Speaker, if I may set the record straight once and for all – I am an Earl, not a Baron. With that out of the way, Baron Greiner, do you expect me to accept that argument? The coalition government has had three months. Three months of second chances, of last chances, of extended patience, giving rise to what, exactly?
The answer is no cohesive legislative agenda. The answer is a foreign policy that has alienated our allies. The answer is an economic policy that is miles behind those of our closest international competitors.
Count Speaker, I wish I could share in the positive belief held by the honourable Baron in this meeting, but I simply cannot. And with reference to his dubious history, I am of course referring to his repeated attempts to dethrone the Prime Minister of Austenasia, though, Count Speaker, I am more than willing to withdraw the reference to “dubious” if you feel it unparliamentary. Regardless, I do not feel his skillset lends itself to foreign policy, which is the key point I was attempting to communicate. Count Speaker, Baron Whyatt has had his time in office, and has failed to achieve any of his manifesto aims. With the general election in just over a month’s time, isn’t it about time the House finally comes to the conclusion that this government has failed?”
The House subsequently went to vote. The vote is still taking place, with three in favour to one against.
Sophia Albina, the defeated GSP by-election candidate, gave a statement to the Daily Micronational on the subject of First Minister Whyatt’s premiership: “First Minister Whyatt failed to do much meaningful [work] during his administration and under his government very little got done. The PDP has also failed to contribute itself fully to its own Coalition, which was particularly noticeable with the last election. As a member of the Coalition, I gave up voting for myself for the sake of unity and what was best for the Coalition.” She went on to insist, however, that “it is clear to me as well as Comrade General Secretary Newton [Baron von Uberquie] that the PDP is not what is best for Mercia. The Green Socialists will take a stand for Mercia, and we refuse to stand by an inactive and ineffective government that will not act on the behalf of the citizenns of Mercia.”
Baron Twain, recent progenitor of the Micronational Economic Group and turncoat member of the National Liberal Party, having defected from Whyatt’s government, remarked to the DM that “The VoNC on First Minister Whyatt is a long overdue action.” He went on to maintain that “the NLP has accurately believed since his election that his premiership would be a failure. It is fantastic to see that Parliament is finally waking up to see the same thing, and I look forward to seeing a new First Minister who is better prepared to face the challenges our nation faces.”
The vote is expected to be tight; it is unclear as of press time if First Minister Whyatt will be able to mobilize his cabinet. Key to the vote will likely be independent MP and former Deputy First Minister Baron Adam Belcher, who is a member of the Other Opposition (the National Liberal Party makes up the Most Loyal Opposition, a separate and loosely “mainstream” branch of the Opposition). He has yet to comment on the subject, and nor has the First Minister himself.
The vote continues.