28 May 2019 – today’s press releases

Winning is, it has to be admitted, so much better than losing, but the ramifications of the European Parliamentary elections keep coming. A block of sixteen MEPs are a significant factor in choosing who leads Europe for the next five years, and Liberal Democrats have an opportunity to be heard at the top table, with seven Liberal members of the European Council.

And today’s press releases give you a flavour of the possibilities…

  • Corbyn remains a block to Labour support for a People’s Vote
  • Catherine Bearder elected to lead Lib Dem MEPs
  • Prime Ministers meet to discuss election result

Corbyn remains a block to Labour support for a People’s Vote

Responding to Diane Abbott’s comments that Labour should support a People’s Vote on any Brexit deal, Liberal Democrat Brexit Spokesperson Tom Brake said:

Labour suffered their worst-ever performance in a UK-wide election this week. Voters rightly punished the Labour leadership for ignoring their concerns and aiding and abetting this Tory Brexit mess.

It is galling that it has taken the Labour Party to get a drubbing at the polls for people like Diane Abbott to think again. It just shows that for Labour it has always been party interest before the country’s interest.

Jeremy Corbyn remains a block in the road. If he refuses to budge, Labour MPs must be ready to remove him. Meantime, Liberal Democrats will continue to campaign full-throttle to give people the final say, with the option to stay in the EU.

Catherine Bearder elected to lead Lib Dem MEPs

The Liberal Democrat MEPs have today elected Catherine Bearder MEP as the leader of the Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament following the first meeting of the MEP group today.

Following the best ever European Election result in the party’s history, Catherine Bearder MEP will lead a group of 16 Liberal Democrat MEPs as the party continues to campaign to stop Brexit.

Speaking after the announcement, Catherine Bearder MEP said:

I am delighted to be elected as the leader for the Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament.

Our main priority will be to stop Brexit and with 16 MEPs we will ensure our message is heard loud and clear in Brussels.

We will also fight for those EU and UK citizens who were denied a vote on this election.

Leader of the Liberal Democrats Vince Cable MP added:

Catherine led the charge for British liberalism in Brussels during a difficult five years for the party.

She has consistently kept the Remain flame alight, as well as being a leading voice on environmental protection and the fight against wildlife trafficking.

With a firm grasp of how the EU institutions work, and how to get things done, I know she will lead our new team of 16 with distinction. She has a group with an impressive body of experience in the European Parliament to complement the talent of our many new MEPs.

We are now the second largest liberal delegation in the European Parliament, and I look forward to our MEPs making a real mark as the Union sets its agenda and chooses a new Commission for the coming five years.

Prime Ministers meet to discuss election result

At the invitation of ALDE Party President Hans van Baalen and ALDE Group leader Guy Verhofstadt, liberal Prime Ministers and European Commissioners met at the Egmont Palace in Brussels on Tuesday 28 May, ahead of the informal dinner of heads of state or government of the same day.

The leaders of Ciudadanos (Spain), Albert Rivera; Liberal Democrats (UK), Sir Vince Cable; and the Free Democratic Party (Germany) Christian Lindner also joined the meeting.

The key topic under discussion was the result of the 2019 European elections, which was a victory for liberal and pro-European forces across Europe.

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  • nigel hunter 29th May '19 - 12:15am

    If the Labour party is to support any Peoples vote it will have to be agreed BEFORE Octobers party get together for by then it could be too late {(Tories could pick a brexiteer for PM picked by a few to rule? millions)

  • Jayne Mansfield 29th May '19 - 12:54am

    Presumably, the agreed process that the Labour Party would follow is written down in black and white.

  • William Fowler 29th May '19 - 8:50am

    Would be good if ALDE could be persuaded to front the concept of the EU offering the UK a better deal than they did Cameron, which would then leave no excuse for not having a second referendum and put the EU itself in a much better light.

  • Richard Underhill 29th May '19 - 9:03am

    The Free Democratic Party in Germany (Die Liberalen) has a proud history, but is affected by the electoral system. The reason for excluding parties which do not achieve 5% of the vote in an election was to exclude extremist parties, but nowadays such parties can exceed 5% while democratic parties are excluded.
    This would be a simple change to implement, but would have important consequences at regional level (lander) as well as national and EU levels, including consequential results for Germany’s upper house.

  • The FDP does have a proud history, but I’m afraid in recent decades it has drifted to the right and lost political relevance as a result. It has become obsessively pro free market capitalism, and lost any vestiges of most of its social liberal past. Younger progressive voters now avoid the FDP, and are supporting the Green Party in large numbers.

  • Richard Underhill 29th May '19 - 3:01pm

    “a tax increase to fund education” was one penny on the income tax rate,
    supported by opinion polls,
    but disliked by voters in the secret ballot.

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