Lib Dems delete tweet about RMT strikes after wildly misreading the room 3 days ago

Lib Dems delete tweet about RMT strikes after wildly misreading the room

Was this the plan?

The Liberal Democrats seemed to go off script on Tuesday morning by condemning striking railway workers.

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In a tweet posted by the official Liberal Democrats party account, they said: "Franky, the Government and RMT are just as bad as each other. The country is sick of them both playing politics with people's lives."

It was deleted shortly afterwards.

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The tweet was deleted shortly after posting

On Monday, the transport spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats took a stronger line, condemning the transport secretary Grant Shapps for his "disgraceful" treatment of the strikes.

Speaking to LBC's Iain Dale, Sarah Olney said Shapps was “absolutely refusing” to act over the rail strikes because he thinks it will “damage Labour” by highlighting their relationship with the union.

"I think [Shapps] wants this strike to go ahead because I think he thinks it will damage Labour," she said.

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"And that’s what we really saw this afternoon in the Chamber. He had a list of all the Labour MPs and what their contributions from the RMT had been.

"So, he is absolutely playing politics on this and I think it is disgraceful.

"It’s going to be so damaging. I know there is more he could be doing and he is absolutely refusing."

A similar line was given by the Lib Dem MP for St Albans Daisy Cooper, who described "anger" with the Tories from voters on the doorstep.

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She said: “There is palpable anger amongst commuters because the Government made no effort to stop these strikes.

"People here pay thousands of pounds to get to work and at the very least expect the Transport Secretary to do his job by keeping the trains running. Grant Shapps has completely mis-read the mood of the commuter belt.”

A Department for Transport spokesman maintained claims that the government did not want the strikes to go ahead.

They said: “Strikes should always be the last resort, not the first, so it is hugely disappointing and premature that the RMT is calling for industrial action.

“We urge the RMT to reconsider so we can find a solution that delivers for workers, passengers and taxpayers alike."

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