ALDE Party Congress preview : Day 2 – an energised delegation hits the dance floor…

Another snowy dawn in Warsaw, made rather brighter by news from home, and whilst some of our delegation are paying the price for staying up to wait for the result from Richmond Park, there’s a definite spring in our step.

And so, what do we have to look forward to today?

It’s all about policy, with working groups looking at a range of resolutions, as well as the proposed reforms to the Party statutes (think constitutional amendments on steroids). Our delegation will be active participants, discussing Brexit, aspects of European democracy, economics, environmental issues and civil liberties.

In terms of the big, set-piece stuff, Congress is formally launched with speeches from the likes of Cecilia Malmström and Margrethe Vestager, two of the Liberal Commissioners, Guy Verhofstadt.

There is also a plenary debate on “Brexit and the Politics of Fear”, which includes our Willie Rennie, which may be slightly different in tone after last night’s success.

On the fringe, there are sessions on agricultural competitiveness, on the European Commission’s view on competition policy, as well as an intriguing discussion entitled “Machines, Jobs and Equality: Technological change and the labour market in Europe”.

The day ends with the obligatory dinner reception in an interesting venue, the Royal Castle. There will be more speeches, from Hans van Baalen, ALDE Party President, and Guy Verhofstadt.

Finally, voting gets under way for the election of the three new Vice-Presidents and the Treasurer. Some of the candidates attended our delegation meeting yesterday evening and, it must be said, it will be a difficult choice, given the high quality of the candidates. The result of the elections will be announced just before the close of Congress tomorrow.

* Mark Valladares is in a European bureaucratic winter wonderland…

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