Category Archives: Party policy and internal matters

Anything to do with Lib Dem internal business, including policy development, consultations, rules and constitutions.

BREAKING NEWS: Vince Cable announces his candidacy for Leader

A statement from Vince Cable MP:

Today I am announcing that I will be a candidate in the forthcoming Liberal Democrat leadership election. I wanted to do so on Lib Dem Voice, the leading forum for discussion amongst our membership.

With 20 years on the national political stage I am passionate as ever about our liberal values. I am ready to commit my energy, enthusiasm and experience to the task of leading the Liberal Democrats through what will be a period of chronic uncertainty. With the prospect of another election looming large, we must be ready for the fight.

Brexit negotiations have begun. The government is split and weakened; Labour is equivocal about Europe. The Liberal Democrats alone have a consistent and principled, outward looking, and approach to the issue. We must fight for the British public to have a final say on the government’s deal with a chance to stay in the EU if the deal is not good enough. To achieve this, we will need to work with like-minded people in other parties.

As Shadow Chancellor I secured a hard-won hearing for the party on the economy, warning of the 2008 financial crisis which has been a source of economic weakness, great inequality and political anger ever since. In government for five years as Secretary of State for Business I created a distinctive Lib Dem vision for the economy with a long-term industrial strategy, promotion of science and innovation, banking reform, investment in young people via apprenticeships and the promotion of socially responsible capitalism. With the economy approaching the Brexit iceberg, Liberal Democrats need more than ever to warn of the dangers ahead and the need for a new course.

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Policy consultation deadline approaches

The Party conference may be over, but whether you got there or not, there is still a chance to make an input into policy. There are four policy consultation papers inviting your comments with a deadline of this Friday. These are each likely to come to a future conference as a full policy paper. Given that it is pretty hard for ordinary members to change much if anything in a policy paper from the floor of conference, this may be your best chance to influence policy. The papers can be found here.

I could have tried to offer neutral summaries …

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Let the trumpets sound, the banners fly, Federal International Relations Committee has met…

The Federal International Relations Committee held its inaugural meeting in central London on 28 January which, for those of us living beyond the M25, meant a rather early start, albeit for a good cause. And we had much to do, not all of it entirely political.

For, with any new body comes a panoply of administration which, although rather dull, is essential to making sure that, when decisions are taken, they are valid. We had, fortunately, elected a Chair in advance, as only one of the directly elected members, Robert Woodthorpe Browne, applied for the post. Standing Orders have been adopted, a secretary elected, and a communications plan initiated.

The bureaucracy dealt with, the Committee looked at forthcoming business. Liberal International is currently drafting a new manifesto, timed for release during its Congress in Andorra in mid-May. 2017 sees the Liberal International reach its seventieth birthday, and the new document is intended to be a reboot of the original “Oxford Manifesto”, written in the shadow of World War 2, which espoused a liberal platform for the rebuilding of peace and democracy after such a calamity. But time moves on, and global liberalism faces new challenges. I’ll report more on this in the coming weeks.

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Alderdice Review: A Further Call for Evidence

John, Lord Alderdice, who is conducting an independent inquiry into improving process and culture within the Liberal Democrats – focusing on race and ethnicity – has put out a further invitation for comments and responses on the issue.

I am most grateful to the significant number of Party members, officials and others who have responded in writing or in confidential meetings, to my invitation to provide relevant experiences and views to help me form an accurate picture. I have also appreciated their thoughts and ideas about how to address issues that they have observed. Some have responded to the invitation for evidence and others to direct approaches by me.

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Internal Party Elections – Round 2

This weekend the Federal Board met for the first time. It was great to have such a mix of new talent and experience to drive the party forward.

You may have noticed during the elections to Party committees late last year that there would be a second round of elections to some of our more specialised party committees, not least the Federal People Development Committee and the Federal Finance and Resources Committee.

While all members are invited to seek nominations to these committees (and a variety of other individual posts – see here for details), due to the specialised nature of these …

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Choosing one’s ideal Focus delivery tool

Last April, while delivering Focus leaflets for a by-election, I had a slight disagreement with a member of the canine community. I came off the worst, resulting in a trip to the local minor injuries department and a spectacular dressing on my finger.

Ever since that incident, I have at last listened to wiser heads who have advised using a Focus delivery tool.

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The end of an era as International Relations Committee faces a new dawn…

irc-meetingYes, this week saw the last meeting of the International Relations Committee in its current form, as the Governance Review has renamed it the ‘Federal International Relations Committee’ and given it a perhaps sharper focus than hitherto. And, whilst the agenda wasn’t exactly a full one, there were matters of import to discuss.

International Office have been, as usual, busy, with work being done in Kenya, Georgia, Morocco and South Africa. Our International officer, Harriet Shone, has been busy, focussing particularly on improving campaigning techniques, engaging under-represented groups and more effective voter outreach. …

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  • User AvatarDJ 26th Jun - 7:41pm
    When the SNP threatened the rule of Westminster Scotland was granted further powers and it was granted the attention it deserved by the B(ritish)BC. Now...
  • User AvatarGeorge Kendall 26th Jun - 7:26pm
    @Mike Thanks for the comment. I'm afraid there's been so many contradictory statements about Labour's welfare policy that I don't think we can look to...
  • User AvatarJohn King 26th Jun - 7:25pm
    Yes I think point 2 is an especially good one, Christian. Brexit is a fad, an eccentric idea based on pure fantasy. It was previously...
  • User AvatarJames 26th Jun - 7:20pm
    Frank I'm well aware of the unemployment situation as I'm a recipient of jsa and highly employable. You seem to have no idea of what's...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 26th Jun - 7:18pm
    Resistance is futile! Surrender now or you will be exterminated! I think we've heard this kind of thing before. Nein Danke!
  • User AvatarChristian 26th Jun - 7:13pm
    The big issue as I see is that a deal is only in the interest of a small number of politicians. Think about it, Brexiteers...
Sat 1st Jul 2017