Author Archives: NewsHound

LibLink: Nick Clegg: MPs deserve a vote on the final Brexit plan not a vague sketch

Nick Clegg’s latest iNews column casts a depressing eye over the debate over the EU Withdrawal Bill this week.

First of all, he looks at the ridiculous date of exit issue:

Putting the Brexit date – March 29th 2019 – into legislation is a particularly specious gesture. It may act as catnip to the increasingly agitated Brexiteers, but to our European partners the sight of the British government shutting down the possibility of extending the Brexit talks must look absurd. As they know, and as I do from my time working in the EU, deadlines can be, and are, frequently missed. And the suggestion from the Government that if MPs have the temerity to reject the Brexit deal they will be responsible for the chaos of no deal is as thuggish as it is misleading – if MPs were to reject a bad deal, the EU would pause the Article 50 timetable rather than push us over the edge of the Brexit cliff.

The whole idea of a meaningful vote on a deal is also ridiculous as we won’t have a deal about our future relationship with the EU before we formally leave. As Nick puts it:

So there is now a high likelihood that MPs will be asked to give their consent to Britain’s departure from the EU before knowing the detail of our future relationship with the EU. It will be like buying a house on the basis of a few grainy photos from a dodgy estate agent who won’t allow you to visit the inside. ‘Members of Parliament must hold firm and reject the government’s tactics’ On a recent trip to Brussels, it was made quite clear to me that the two negotiating teams are aiming for no more than a “heads of agreement” deal by the time Britain reaches its Article 50 deadline. This means that David Davis will return with little more than an outline of detail-free pledges on areas like security and combating terrorism, and a vague promise to strike a Canada-style free trade agreement

Posted in LibLink | Tagged , , and | 36 Comments

London could be the green finance capital of the world

Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable has been writing about his green vision for finance, with London at the centre.

This is a welcome this initiative. The more we can green all aspects of our policy, the better. We have a good record from setting up the Green Investment Bank in coalition, and funding renewables. Vince begins,

The prospect of Brexit threatens to cause serious damage to the UK’s financial services industry.

Paris, Frankfurt, Dublin and even Luxembourg are circling like hungry jackals waiting to pick off the weakest members of the herd.

London

Posted in LibLink | Tagged , and | 3 Comments

LISTEN: to Layla Moran on Any Questions: We have a foreign secretary who is not fit for purpose

Layla Moran took a trip to Kent on Friday night to appear on the Any Questions panel.

She had invited local party members to help her practice earlier in the week.

She answered questions on Michel Barnier’s deadline, whether Boris should be sacked (even asking the question had the audience cheering and Layla’s answer was “yes, yes, yes”), the case of the young boy whose image is on a police database after he was reported for sexting and the idea of safe spaces

Posted in News | Tagged , , and | 2 Comments

Vince: Exit from Brexit very much on the cards

Lord Kerr, who wrote Article 50, has said many times that it is revocable. We could get out of Brexit if we wanted. People are resigned to it because they don’t know that we could get out of it. So spread the news far and wide whenever you see it.

He’s reportedly making a speech tomorrow in which he emphasises that point. Vince Cable had this to say:

The author of article 50 revealing that the process can be revoked is a significant development.

There is no longer any refuge for brexiteers who argue that this whole process can’t be revoked.

The possibility of an

Posted in News | Tagged , , , and | 17 Comments

LibLink: Sir Ed Davey: Chancellor must properly fund community policing

Ed Davey has written for Politics Home about the need for proper funding of community policing.

He outlined what has been happening in recent years:

We are seeing the police disappearing off our streets, clearing the way for criminals. After years of falling crime rates the latest statistics show a 13% increase recorded crime across England and Wales, and even steeper increases for violent offences including knife crime. That is why I am leading a debate in Parliament on the issue of police funding ahead of the Budget.

It also leads to the Met Police saying they aren’t going to investigate so-called “low …

Posted in News | Tagged and | 8 Comments

Christine Jardine: Politicians must live up to their honourable titles

Here’s Christine Jardine MP talking on Politics Scotland about the need for all parties to take action to protect staff and volunteers from harassment.

An independent body is all very well, she says, but political parties can’t abrogate responsibility and say it’s nothing to do with them.

Then in Friday’s Scotmsn she said that the current harassment scandal might be the “lightning rod” for “cultural change”

Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Comment

LibLink: Nick Clegg: Finally the Brexit spell is beginning to lift: MPs are beginning to stand against it

In Nick Clegg’s latest iNews column, he says that MPs are finally starting to flex some muscle in the Brexit process. He is as bold as to say that he believes Parliament will actually save the country from its fate. Nick’s article is important because it gives those who think that our fate is inevitable a clear route map to a better future.

He says that if Parliament votes down the deal, the two year Brexit clock will stop ticking:

Next October, Brexit Secretary David Davis will present the Government’s threadbare Brexit deal to the House of Commons for approval. This is the key vote, the key moment, which will determine Britain’s future. Vote down the deal, and headlong rush towards Brexit will come to a shuddering halt. The clock counting down the minutes to Britain’s departure from the EU will stop ticking. ‘Senior officials in Brussels last week expressed their certainty that Britain can still find a place for itself within the EU’

The government, with increasing panic, insists otherwise, and will continue to repeat its threat that by rejecting a deal MPs will be voting for Britain to crash out of Europe without a deal. This is total nonsense. For a start, Britain will legally remain part of the EU.

However, should MPs, on behalf of their constituents, decide not to go ahead with Brexit then the Article 50 process will inevitably be paused. Our friends and partners across Europe won’t shrug their shoulders and simply carry on with the process. Instead the EU will reach for the pause button. This was made clear to me by senior officials in Brussels last week, who not only expressed their growing bewilderment with the government’s approach to the Brexit talks but also their certainty that Britain can find a place for itself within the EU should it choose a different path.

Posted in LibLink | Tagged and | 15 Comments
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  • User Avatarexpats 20th Nov - 9:39am
    David Raw 20th Nov '17 - 8:52am......PS A pie costs £ 2.50 at the Accrington Wham Stadium – at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge it’s £ 4.80...
  • User AvatarGlenn 20th Nov - 9:33am
    Palehorse. I think, you are basically Michael Palin in Life of Brian "Too right Centurion, great people the Roman's".
  • User AvatarKomodo 20th Nov - 9:16am
    The Institute (no longer a registered charity) will be glad to see how many LibDems are happy to accept Blair's version of events without question....
  • User AvatarArnold Kiel 20th Nov - 9:16am
    A return to the Drachma is impossible: it would first require a stealth political decision and thousands of Greek civil servants would have to work...
  • User AvatarMartin 20th Nov - 9:03am
    This is a particularly objectionable referendum that fortunately has had a happy outcome. There is an obvious mismatch between the homosexual small minority and the...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 20th Nov - 8:52am
    @ Palehorse "My point was simply that those who want the best things in life should just shut up and pay for them instead of...