Tag Archives: ALDE

#SelfEU: the way to win a day with ALDE’s Guy Verhofstadt*

Guy VerhofstadtYes, the #selfEU is actually a thing, as ALDE’s Guy Verhofstadt promotes his campaign to become the next President of the European Commission:

THE ONE AND ONLY “SELF-EU” CONTEST
It’s simple, just send us an EU selfie or a #selfEU, and you could win a day with Guy Verhofstadt.

The EU is about more than rules and regulations. Show us your favourite thing about the EU. Did you just board an airplane on a cheap flight, cross a border without having to use your passport or change currencies, or

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged , and | 4 Comments

Opinion: It’s official – Lib Dems are “most successful and influential” in Europe

Europe Day - European Union - Some rights reserved by Niccolò CarantiAhead of the second EU debate between Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage this evening, a timely new report has found that Liberal Democrats are the most influential British party in the European Parliament.

The analysis of MEPs’ voting records from VoteWatch Europe over the past five years by think tank Policy Network, finds that Liberal Democrats are the “most successful coalition partner” in the European Parliament and “have played a central role in policy-making in both Westminster and Brussels.”

As …

Posted in News and Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

ALDE 2014 – it’s just like being in a movie

aldeIn any half decent action movie, you have to have a vaguely credible, if unlikely, hero, a stereotypically evil, well-resourced opponent, and some sort of desirable outcome. For example, a mild mannered archaeologist or museum curator, the Nazis and the retrieval of some mystic artefact.

In ‘Indiana Clegg and the Temple of Federalism’, the outcome is the selection of the right Liberal candidate for President of the European Commission, and the opponent is Guy Verhofstadt, a former Prime Minister of Belgium and current leader of the Liberal group in the European Parliament. The hero? You decide…

Posted in News | 33 Comments

2014 – the year of an election the media might miss

This year starts with media attention turning towards European elections in the Spring, and will end with the political parties cranking through the gears in anticipation of a General Election. In between, though, there are two elections that matter, one in Brussels (or, in an interesting turn of events, Athens), one in the Liberal Democrats, each of which will serve as a marker towards future events.

First, the European one. After the European elections, the European Council will vote, using qualified majority voting and bearing in mind the results of the elections, for a nominee to become the new President of …

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

2013 @ALDEParty Congress: a manifesto is born

ALDE has become the first of the European political parties to release its manifesto for next year’s European elections.

As ALDE Party President, Sir Graham Watson notes;

This manifesto is a departure from the norm – it has been forged in the heat of the crisis Europe has been weathering for a number of years now. I am pleased that it demands a stronger union to serve our interests while calling for a cutback in top-heavy, unnecessary and costly bureaucracy. A stronger, simpler union is what we all want and need and that is what our manifesto delivers. It is a solid

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Nick Clegg backs Olli Rehn as ALDE European Commission Presidential candidate

Nick Clegg yesterday backed Olli Rehn, Vice-President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs to become the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) Party candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission in next year’s European Elections.

One of fourteen ALDE leaders to have co-signed a letter nominating Olli Rehn as their candidate, he said;

I am delighted to nominate Olli Rehn to be the ALDE Presidential candidate. He is the perfect man for the job, and will be a powerful advocate for the liberal cause. I know Olli will help us build a stronger economy

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged and | 3 Comments

ALDE to select candidate for president of the European Commission

The ALDE Party has called an extraordinary Electoral Congress to advise the ALDE Party Bureau to choose a candidate for the President of the European Commission. This congress will take place in the afternoon of the 1st February 2014, in Brussels. Liberal Democrats are the biggest delegation with the total of sixty-two votes.

There are only two declared candidates so far, Guy Verhofstadt, Leader of the ALDE Group in the European Parliament, and former Prime Minister of Belgium, and Olli Rehn, Vice President of the European Commission, and Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs, a key portfolio over the past …

Posted in Europe / International, Events and News | Also tagged | 2 Comments

Liberals launch new European network for LGBT rights

Giles Goodall at ALDELast weekend, over a thousand European liberals met in London for the annual ALDE congress, hosted by the Lib Dems and opened by Nick Clegg. The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe – the European family of liberal parties – became the first to adopt their joint manifesto for next May’s elections to the European Parliament.

But a second historic event took place at the congress: the launch of a new European liberal campaign for LGBT rights: Liberals for Equality. LGBT rights are human rights, …

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 3 Comments

2013 @ALDEParty Congress: the election results

On Saturday afternoon, despite some technical difficulties with the election equipment, Returning Officers Daniel Obst (FDP, Germany) and Mark Valladares (Liberal Democrats, UK) were able to announce the winners of the two contests as follows:

President

  • Sir Graham Watson MEP (Liberal Democrats, UK) – 377 votes (91%)

Vice-Presidents

  • Lousewies van der Laan (D66, Netherlands) – 389 votes (98%)
  • Marc Guerrero i Tarragó (Convergencia, Catalonia) – 378 votes (95%)
  • Olle Schmidt MEP (Folkpartiet, Sweden) – 348 votes (87%)
  • Karin Riis-Jørgensen (Venstre, Denmark) – 339 votes (85%)
  • Alexander Graf Lambsdorff MEP (FDP, Germany) –

Posted in Europe / International and News | 3 Comments

@ALDEParty Congress: writing a manifesto for Europe

So, a bit like the Eurovision Song Contest, but possibly with better tunes, liberals from as far afield as Armenia and Catalonia, Finland and Cyprus are gathered to debate the draft manifesto.

The draft is founded on four key themes;

  • creating jobs and opportunities – free trade agreements, stimulating SMEs and e-commerce
  • setting new priorities – redirecting spending towards increasing jobs and improving lives, cutting administrative budgets and the Common Agricultural Policy, and ensuring healthy public finances
  • stronger in the world and safer at home – a common asylum and refugee policy, strengthening EU agencies and cooperation to fight organised crime, pooling and sharing

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged | 11 Comments

@ALDEParty Congress: Council, the contractual obligation album?

Welcome to Liberal Democrat Voice’s coverage of the Annual Congress of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe, or ALDE for short. The Congress, which was officially opened yesterday evening, continues until Saturday.

As at many similar events, scheduling anything for 9 a.m. tends to signify a less exciting part of the business or, for the more cynical, things that the leadership hope to sneak through relatively unnoticed. ALDE Council meetings tend to into the former category… And yet, because most, if not all, of the key figures are present, it offers an opportunity to see how Bureau candidates perform …

Posted in Europe / International and News | 1 Comment

@ALDEParty Congress: meet (most of) the Vice-Presidential candidates *updated*

Welcome to Liberal Democrat Voice’s coverage of the Annual Congress of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe, or ALDE for short. The Congress, which was officially opened yesterday evening, continues until Saturday.

In the run-up to next year’s European elections, the role of ALDE in leading the Europe-wide campaign is a key one, and so it was no surprise to see a high quality list of candidates for Vice-Presidential positions on the 2014/15 Bureau, which will be elected tomorrow. And because the Liberal Democrats represent about 15% of the entire electorate, six of the seven candidates put in an …

Posted in Europe / International and News | 4 Comments

Sir Graham Watson MEP writes…Welcoming ALDE Party Congress to London

This week the Liberal Democrats are playing host to the wider European Liberal family – the ALDE Party’s big annual congress, which is taking place in London on today, Friday and Saturday.

Over 900 Liberals from across the EU and beyond will gather in Canary Wharf to draw up the common manifesto for the 2014 European Parliament elections and consider nominees for the Liberal candidate for European Commission President.

The European Liberal family includes three current Prime Ministers: Mark Rutte of the Netherlands, Andris Ansip of Estonia and Alenka Bratušek of Slovenia, and they will soon be joined by Xavier Bettel in …

Posted in Op-eds | 9 Comments

Will Lib Dem councillors miss out on this year’s LeaDeRs Awards?

The deadline for submitting nominations for the Local and Regional Liberal Politicians Awards, LeaDeRs, organised by the ALDE Group in the EU’s Committee of the Regions has been extended until 10 October, to allow members of those parties in Europe (such as the Lib Dems) who have been tied up with party conferences, or in other cases, election campaigns.

Open to Liberal Democrats from across Europe, nominations have so far been received for work carried out by local councillors from Germany, Italy, Ireland, Hungary, Estonia, and Latvia. Others from France and Spain are on their way.

Previous winners include Paul Scriven, …

Posted in Europe / International | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

ALDE Party Congress needs you!

What is the ALDE Party?

It is an alliance of Liberals and Democrats across Europe consisting of more than 50 member parties, Liberal Democrats in the UK being the largest.

What is ALDE Party Congress?

ALDE is arranging their annual party congress in Canary Wharf, London this year. The theme of the Congress is creating a European Manifesto. The ALDE Party Congress is the biggest annual event gathering Liberals across Europe:

  • over 650 members of liberal parties from around the continent;
  • top politicians including Prime Ministers, European Commissioners, Ministers, Members of the European and national Parliaments, Members of the Committee of the Regions, and many

Posted in Conference, Europe / International and News | 6 Comments

The LeaDeRs Awards 2013 have been launched!

The ALDE Group in the EU’s Committee of the Regions has launched the third edition of the awards for key liberal democrat players at the level of subnational governments (regional and local). Open to liberal democrats from across Europe, previous winners include Paul Scriven, Leader of Sheffield City Council (2008-2011) for Achievement in Government at Local Level, awarded in 2010. This year’s awards ceremony will be held on 4 December in Brussels.

Both the national board of ALDE member parties as well as their local party branches can submit nominations of persons who are considered to be suitable candidates for such …

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LibLink…Sophie in’t Veld and Guy Verhofstadt: Europe must get tough with the US over NSA spying revelations

ALDE MEPs Sophie in’t Veld and Guy Verhofstadt pull no punches in an article in the Guardian about the US spying revelations, saying that Europe has only itself to blame for treating the US with awe to the extent that it was bound to start taking liberties:

The truth is that for too long, the EU and its member states have been prioritising cosy relations with the US over the interests of their own citizens. The spying scandal will now put Europe to the test. It must show that it is both willing and able to protect the rights of European

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 9 Comments

Sarah Ludford writes …Creating EU Data Protection rules that safeguard both privacy and jobs

As those who read this LibDem Voice article by Peter Bradwell of Open Rights group will know, I am currently the ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe) group ‘shadow rapporteur’ on the draft EU Data Protection Regulation in the European Parliament.

I was not originally expecting to play a major role on this particular piece of legislation. But when my German FDP colleague Alexander Alvaro unfortunately suffered a serious car accident in February, the ALDE group appointed me as his interim replacement. I unwisely promised a response to Peter’s article ‘soon’! – but the last few months of negotiations have been very demanding. The new Regulation, unlike …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

ALDE Party Congress venue for 2013 announced… welcome to London!

The Liberal Democrats are proud to announce the hosting of the ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe) Congress in London at the end of November this year.

The ALDE Party Congress is the biggest annual event gathering Liberals across Europe:

  • over 650 members of liberal parties from around the continent;
  • top politicians including Prime Ministers, European Commissioners, Ministers, Members of the European and national Parliaments, Members of the Committee of the Regions, and many other delegates
  • an event with European visibility, acknowledging the role of the supporting party within both a European and the national political context
  • topical debates, high level speeches and

Posted in Europe / International, Events and News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

ALDE Party Council: “The sun lounger can wait, Brad, there are only twelve months to save Europe!”

From Yerevan and Lisbon, from Mariehamn and Palermo they came, not necessarily to put the world to rights immediately, but to at least organise the processes by which it might happen.

Ah yes, process – not an obvious reason to come to Pula, in Istria on the Adriatic coast of Croatia, I admit, but that was what brought European liberals together for the Spring meeting of the Council of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe (ALDE). The promise of warm sun, blue sky and crystal clear waters couldn’t have had an influence, surely?

There were two key issues to …

Posted in Europe / International and News | 10 Comments

ALDE Council preview: separating the Central European goat from the Eastern European sheep?

istria logoIt must be said that, when I was elected to be one of the Party’s delegates to the Council of what was then ELDR and is now ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe), I had a vague idea that the travel would be interesting.

And yes, Dresden and Palermo were interesting, despite there not being very many direct flights. Yerevan, on the other hand, was not exactly an obvious destination, although the warmth of the welcome, and the sheer enthusiasm for ‘Europe’ was invigorating for someone who has to …

Posted in News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

LibLink: Guy Verhofstadt thinks that David Cameron would be wrong to leave the EU…

In a piece for the Huffington Post entitled “The UK Is Sleepwalking to the EU Exit. It Is Time to Wake Up”, Guy Verhofstadt, Leader of the Alliance of Liberal and Democrats in Europe (ALDE) Group in the European Parliament, gives a glimpse of the difficulties facing David Cameron in seeking to renegotiate the United Kingdom’s relationship with the European Union. He warns;

Cameron will not succeed if he attempts to hold his European partners to ransom, exchanging acquiescence to EU treaty change over the eurozone for a unilateral repatriation of powers.

and notes, in language that Liberal Democrats would …

Posted in Europe / International, LibLink and News | Also tagged , and | 20 Comments

Europe – what to look out for in 2013…

EU Parliament Brussels - Some rights reserved by PoetografieWhilst most of the attention will be on whether or not the Euro can survive, or whether another country will need to be bailed out, there will be much else besides going on. So, for your delectation and delight, here are some of the highlights;

The first half of 2013 will see the Irish hold the rotating Presidency and, at the end of their watch, the Europe of 27 will become the Europe of 28, as Croatia become members of the European Union on 1 July, just as the Lithuanians take over the

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged and | 7 Comments

A Christmas message from the President of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe

It is that time of year when Christmas messages start appearing, and here at Liberal Democrat Voice, we are no exception. And so, for your delight, here is a message from Sir Graham Watson, Liberal Democrat MEP for the South West, and President of ALDE…

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged | 11 Comments

Are you free for a weekend in Istria in mid-May?…

Now, you have to admit, that isn’t an offer you’re likely to get every day. If I was to add that most of your airfare will be paid (although not your accommodation), you might become a little more wary. “What’s the deal?”, I hear you ask.

It’s like this. The International Office of the Liberal Democrats is responsible for supporting the Party’s delegation to the Spring Council meeting of ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe, formerly ELDR), and making sure that we send a full delegation of fifteen to take part. And, as part of that exercise, and to encourage a more diverse representation, they’ve asked me to invite you (yes, you!) to apply to fill any vacancies that might arise.

Posted in Europe / International and News | 3 Comments

Guy Verhofstadt probably wasn’t on Nigel Farage’s Christmas card list anyway…

It would be fair to say that Nigel Farage and the leader of the ALDE group in the European Parliament, former Belgian Prime Minister, Guy Verhofstadt, are unlikely to be close friends. It’s rather less likely after this intervention on Wednesday. Sit back and enjoy…

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged and | 16 Comments

ELDR Congress – a quick catch up…

Last week that unusual event, a keynote speech by a senior Westminster-based Liberal Democrat at an ELDR* event, as Nick Clegg made one of the speeches that opened this year’s Congress.

Europe needs liberals now more than ever. The shared challenges we face are ones that can only be tackled when like-minded people across Europe work together: how to create jobs, particularly for our young people, and bring back prosperity; how to tackle climate change and build the new, green economies we need for our future.

For the rest …

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged and | 3 Comments

Three cheers for the unsung heroes of Brussels

A new survey by European news portal Euractiv has ranked Sharon Bowles MEP as the most influential Brit in EU policy-making, eight places ahead of David Cameron and thirty-three above Nigel Farage. The UK40 survey also features Lib Dem MEPs Andrew Duff and Sir Graham Watson in the top sixteen. National politicians such as Cameron, William Hague and Nick Clegg make the top twenty, but often lose out in the ranking to less well known Brits in the EU institutions.

Posted in Europe / International | Also tagged , , and | Leave a comment

Opinion: How my life changed forever – 100 days in!

At the start of this year I was a Lib Dem from Yorkshire working and studying in London who according to some journalists was an “unknown” – although I was quite well known in certain Lib Dem circles, especially for my quiches! The resignation of Diana Wallis, as Lib Dem MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber changed all that.

In 2009 I was third on the Lib Dem list for Yorkshire and the Humber. When you are third on a regional list and the …

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , and | 13 Comments

European Parliament overwhelmingly rejects ACTA

The culmination of weeks of campaigning and lobbying against the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) came this morning, as the European Parliament voted 478 to 39 to reject it, despite the fact that twenty-two member states, including the United Kingdom, had already signed it. As a result, the Agreement is now likely to become irrelevant without the support of European Union nations.

The Agreement had already been rejected by five Committees of the European Parliament, and despite attempts by Conservative MEPs to defer the vote, as urged by UNI MEI, a “global union for the Media, Entertainment and Art Industries”, …

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged and | 9 Comments



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