Author Archives: John Coburn

Opinion: The General Election is near – are we ready?

polling dayHaving taken a break from frontline campaigning in recent months it’s given me time to observe the party as a voter, if not an impartial one.  The European and local elections are undoubtedly important, but the big challenge is a year away and we still have time to make the Liberal Democrat case.

I’m instinctively pro-coalition and Nick Clegg and the leadership have to take great credit on what has been achieved on area such as tax, the pupil premium, pensions and gay marriage.  Without our party in coalition, there would …

Posted in Op-eds | 27 Comments

Opinion: Turing, equality and internationalism

What have we contributed as part of the Coalition government?  Well one success (but there have been many others) is enacting the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013 which gives  gay and lesbian people the  same right to marry as heterosexual couples.  I have severe doubts that a Tory majority government could have introduced this reform!

Whilst Britain has progressed to an open society where LGBT people are protected by law, many other countries like Iran, Nigeria and notably Russia have not.  However liberal Britain did not just happen overnight, and the changes in our society’s attitudes have taken many decades to …

Posted in News | Tagged and | 6 Comments

Opinion: The ‘Bedroom Tax’ does not pass the Fairer Society test

The leadership’s positioning over secret courts has angered many of the party faithful over the past week, but for me the major disappointment  has been our uncritical support of the Tory inspired ‘spare bedroom subsidy’ policy or how I think more accurately describes it – the ‘bedroom tax’.  Our leader Nick Clegg used the provocative ‘spare bedroom subsidy’ term in a Q&A session at last week’s Spring Conference, and it has been repeated by senior Lib Dems including Mike German on Newsnight in the days following.

The policy, which is part of the government’s welfare reform package, will cut the amount …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 48 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • Ian Miles
    Hear hear, Graham! I joined LDs in 2016 (then living in Oxon) & am proud to have done my bit as a footslogger for the excellent Layla Moran. But as Britain ...
  • George Thomas
    To be fair to the Brexit idea, it might still have been a success (or at least not as bad) if someone else had been in charge and worldwide circumstances hadn't...
  • Tim Rogers
    Interesting map. One of the least bregretful is Penrith and Borders which is a constituency where we topped the poll in last year's election. Cornwall is split ...
  • Joe Bourke
    Martin, the issue of tax avoidance vs tax evasion in complex affairs can be a fine line as this blog discusses ...
  • Ian Shires
    It's a fair point that you make. We should give more thought to what it means to support diversity. It's so easy to follow the crowd, and pay lip service to rec...