15 May 2019 – today’s press releases

Lib Dems: Brexit vote shows Tory and Labour talks are pointless

Responding to the announcement from Downing Street that MPs will vote on Brexit legislation in June, Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesperson Tom Brake said:

It is now clear that nothing whatsoever has come of the Tory and Labour Brexit talks. These negotiations are yet another example of pointless and irresponsible time-wasting by both the government and the official opposition.

The Liberal Democrats have been fighting Brexit for nearly three years and are the strongest party who support remaining in the EU.

To get our country out of this mess, orchestrated by Theresa May and aided by Jeremy Corbyn, vote Liberal Democrat in the EU elections on 23rd May. Every vote is a vote to stop Brexit.

Change UK’s lead candidate in Scotland endorses Lib Dems as party of remain

Lead Change UK candidate for Scotland, Cllr David Macdonald, said:

It has been an honour to be the lead candidate for Change UK for election to the European Parliament for the Scotland electoral region. This new party is genuinely a force for good in British politics and all of their supporters, candidates and elected members have played an integral part in trying to reshape the way in which politics is done in this country for the better. For my involvement within that movement I will be forever grateful.

After a great deal of reflection on the political landscape we are facing in Scotland at present, I have come to the point where I have realised that I must do what is best for the future of this country before anything else. If things continue as they are, the remain vote will split in Scotland and put at risk the representation that supporters of remaining in the European Union so collectively desire.

For that reason I have decided to end my candidacy for Change UK effective immediately. I am now calling for those in favour of remaining in the European Union, including all supporters of Change UK in Scotland, to do what is best for our collective voice in Europe and to support the Scottish Liberal Democrats in the upcoming European election to better ensure that they gain representation and secure a seat in these European elections.

Over the past three weeks I have campaigned passionately for a new type of politics. A politics that is based on mutual respect, common understanding and shared values. I believe the action that I am taking today is consistent with those ideals.

Scottish Liberal Democrat Leader Willie Rennie MSP added:

This will have been a difficult decision for David as he clearly admires those in Change UK as do I. David has recognised the emerging political landscape and rightly felt he had to act to unite the remain vote behind the Liberal Democrats.

I invite each and every person across Scotland who wants to stop Brexit, no matter where their political loyalties have lain before, to lend their vote to the Liberal Democrats and fight for a positive future inside the EU.

Brexit will cause immeasurable harm to every corner of Britain. We can’t let that happen.

If pro-Europeans unite and back the Liberal Democrats we can end the chaos and uncertainty.

Voters have the opportunity to put a stop to the chaos on May 23rd by voting Liberal Democrat and demanding to stop Brexit.

I want to thank David for taking this important step.

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4 Comments

  • Laurence Cox 16th May '19 - 12:54pm

    “Lib Dems: Brexit vote shows Tory and Labour talks are pointless”

    Paul Mason was saying exactly the same in New Statesman yesterday:

    https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/staggers/2019/05/labour-s-refusal-oppose-brexit-killing-it-doorstep-it-should-quit-talks

    I’ll be quite happy if the Labour leadership don’t wake up to this until 24th May.

  • Matthew Huntbach 16th May '19 - 1:18pm

    Tom Brake said:

    To get our country out of this mess, orchestrated by Theresa May and aided by Jeremy Corbyn, vote Liberal Democrat in the EU elections on 23rd May. Every vote is a vote to stop Brexit.

    This is not a good thing to say.

    By blaming Theresa May like this, it gives the impression that a decent Brexit could easily have been achieved, and it was stopped by the likes of May and Corbyn who didn’t really want it.

    This will just aid the Farage party.

    By saying about a LibDem vote “Every vote is a vote to stop Brexit”, that is just throwing away a large number of potential votes we could win. We need to win back large numbers of people who used to vote for us, who are unhappy about the way our country has gone in recent decades and thought that voting Leave would demonstrate that and get their concerns noted.

    What we need to point out is that what Theresa May negotiated was what Brexit in practice is going to mean. She tried her hardest to get a reasonable deal, and that was it. The fact that nothing else could be achieved and agreed to is because nothing else that is workable is possible. We need to state clearly that the fact that Farage will say NOTHING about what he would actually do next if he did get Hard Brexit indicates he wants to hide the reality of what it really means, either that or he has no clue himself.

    We need to point out clearly that the leading figures of Hard Brexit are those are those who want to get support by blaming the EU for the unhappiness that is actually due to their own right-wing economic policies being put in place, and they want to leave the EU to push those policies even further.

  • Matthew Huntbach 16th May '19 - 1:55pm

    Laurence Cox

    “Lib Dems: Brexit vote shows Tory and Labour talks are pointless”

    Paul Mason was saying exactly the same in New Statesman yesterday:

    Again, this is the wrong thing to say. It continues to give the impression that there is a form of Brexit that will make life more pleasant for those who voted Leave, and it is just being blocked by conventional politicians. All that does is aid the Farage party.

    We need to state instead that trying to work out a workable form of Brexit was necessary to meet the referendum decision, and it is right for May and Corbyn to try this. It has not worked because the sort of Soft Brexit that Corbyn supports is considered worse than staying in the EU by other Brexiteers, given that in practice it means keeping to the EU agreements but not having a say on them.

    When the referendum happened most people agreed that just leaving the EU without an agreement would be a disaster, and the assumption was that an agreement would be easy to work out. It hasn’t been because there is no form of Brexit that has majority support. Those who support Brexit have been unable to agree on a compromise.

    What is happening is that the extremist Brexiteers won’t agree to any compromise because they think they will get what they want if there isn’t one. So don’t put the blame on anyone else. Instead, make clear that the extremist Brexit is certainly NOT what the referendum was about – when it happened there was the constant claim that an agreement would be easily worked out, and many who agreed to Brexit made it clear they would not agree to leave the EU without any agreement.

    Then let us just come out and say what the EU does, how it does it, and how it needs decent people like LibDem MEPs to help organise this. The madness is that despite Brexit dominating political discussion in the past few years, there has been almost nothing put out to properly explain to ordinary people what it really means. Just political insults being thrown around, which have done nothing to help develop a clear understanding of the real issues.

  • Laurence Cox 16th May '19 - 10:16pm

    @Matthew Huntbach
    I’m just referencing exactly what Paul Mason, a well-known left-winger, wrote in the New Statesman. You may not like it, but this is fact and you saying that we should deny facts because they don’t suit your opinions makes us no better than other politicians. You have no proof that Tom Brake’s Press Release is aiding Farage; all you have written is merely your opinion.

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