Jo Swinson MP writes….A campaign we can all be proud of

We are nearly at the end of this Leadership election, with voting closing tomorrow. Regardless of who you’re supporting, I want to thank every member who has engaged with this campaign. Everyone who came to a hustingsmeeting, emailed a question to Ed or to me, posted onto social media or caught up with us on visits – thank you.

There is a golden opportunity ahead of our party now. I have been so excited to see all the new members coming to hustings meetings, hearing their questions, thoughts and ideas. We have a unique offer and vision for the country and people are open to our message. We can continue this growth and build our movement further together. We can stop Brexit and compete to win a General Election.

This campaign has reminded me of how strong our party can be. We have such a range of skilled, talented people working around the country. We still need to do more to harness the incredible knowledge and expertise that we have in our members and supporters. I’ve been really buoyed up by seeing so many local success stories everywhere we have been. I know the new members I have met are going to be adding to those success stories soon too.

Whatever result is declared tomorrow, this campaign has shown the best of our party. Reasoned, respectful debate. Thoughtful, searching questions. People agonising over their voting decisions, which they take seriously. What a contrast to the Conservative election!

Although it has been exhausting at times, crisscrossing the country meeting everyone, this campaign has made me proud to be a Liberal Democrat. Thank you all.

* Jo Swinson is Liberal Democrat MP for East Dunbartonshire, and was a Minister in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and Equalities Minister from 2012-15.

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  • Michael Cole 21st Jul '19 - 11:38am

    Dear Jo,

    You and Ed make a great double-act.

  • Alfred Emery 21st Jul '19 - 1:07pm

    Will the actual Leadership results be announced on Monday or Tuesday and at what time? ?

  • Charles Pragnell 21st Jul '19 - 2:28pm

    Either Jo or Ed would be good choices for leader. Vince his handing over with the parties position so much stronger. at between 18 to 20 percent in the polls, best ever European election results and not forgetting 705 council gains, which including gaining twelve councils. Momentum is the key , a good result in Wales at the by election will be a good indicator of how we might far in rural target seats in a general election when it comes . A Autumn general election is a real posibility .
    The election in Wales will be a indication of how the Brexit party will eat in to Tory and Labour votes. This may be an indication of how we approach a G E in the South West and Southern England.Also it looks brighter in Scotland , the Lib Dem vote is up from 7.8 percent to 14 percent in voter intentions .

    Jo and Ed would would be good as our new leadership , and in a G E they really could make an impact.
    The Summer of 2019 may be the Summer that Liberal minded Tory MPs who can’t stomach Boris , defect to us.

    We need to be a party with a vision of being a government, that looks outwards , and is internationalist, a party which stands up for social justice, and has a strategy on fighting inner city and rural deprevation. A party with real green intentions that would attract green leaning voters.

    It’s time we sang out the Song “The Land” a song written at the time of Lloyd Georges people’s budget. The time has come to drive a Liberal agenda ,that leads us away from the Boris Johnson Cliff edge. In all the years of being involved in Liberalism has there ever been a bigger opportunity to break through the glass ceiling .

  • Elshad Karbasi 21st Jul '19 - 2:38pm

    One thing which has disappointed me is that both candidates have failed to attack Labour / Corbyn enough on issues other Brexit. We should have pointed out Mr Corbyn’s history of aligning with terror groups, general anti-West attitude etc. make him unfit to be PM, and that we completely reject his type of politics. Seems like a missed opportunity, and something which could have drawn some more people who are worried about Corbyn towards us.

  • David Becket 21st Jul '19 - 2:53pm

    @ Alfred Emery
    What bright spark has ensured we announce our leader the same day the Tories announce the new PM. We should put it off a couple of days

  • Mick Taylor 21st Jul '19 - 3:30pm

    The ballot closes at 1pm. I imagine the results will be declared by early evening. There’s only 2 candidates! @DaveBeckett do you seriously believe that delaying the result will get us more publicity? The press will ignore us whatever time we declare the result. Whoever wins will have to start tackling that problem straight away.

  • Paul Barker 21st Jul '19 - 3:55pm

    Some people have the timing the wrong way round, our date of the 23rd was announced Months ago, The Tories then announced that there’s would be on the same date, pure coincidence of course !
    Our announcement was then moved forward to the 22nd (presumably at 7 PM) as far as it could be moved at that late stage.
    We can’t force The Media to cover it any more than we can make our Politics “Exciting” to them.

  • David Becket 21st Jul '19 - 6:40pm

    We cannot force the media to notice us, but we should do whatever we can do to ensure that our leadership news does not clash with the election of a PM. Simples

  • Richard Underhill 22nd Jul '19 - 8:04am

    4pm today (16.00 British Summer Time) confirmed on BBC Radio news at 08.00.
    Tories tomorrow.

  • Jason Billin 22nd Jul '19 - 10:03am

    The contest to elect a new leader, and how it has been conducted, has reinforced my pride at being a member of this party. As PPC for Rushcliffe, I am looking forward to campaigning in the upcoming general election with both of the candidates, one as Leader, the other as…
    For those questioning the timing of the result announcement – we are bound by rules. We respect rules governing elections.
    The Lib Dems are on the rise, let’s all get behind our new leader and support them out on the streets, knocking on doors, and spreading the word. We must inform the electorate of our core values, ideals, and a move all our vision for a fairer, greener future – IN the EU.

  • Let’s not get carried away! I have voted Lib since 1959, and am now optimistic that from the current ugly turmoil (at home and abroad) better things must emerge.

    But surely our splendid looking results in the euro-election were largely an upright finger to Conservatives and Labour from their customary supporters, in what was in fact a phantom election? We cannot stop Brexit now, I fear, and MEPs are therefore little more than mirages, bright on the near horizon.

    But the euro-election figures are indeed more encouraging than not: the mirage reflects a real scene, but more distant than it looks — and to the thirsty distance really counts.

    If we look, then, further into the future, does the balance of our policies suit? We shall accomplish little without great strength in Parliament. That comes from seats and they come from voters. And voters are best sought among those too young to be dyed in the wool, those with fresh minds and fresh hopes and fears. It seems to me that we ought more conspicuously to be turning our thoughts and our efforts towards climate-change, environmental-degradation, and redressing the growing gulf between high incomes and low ones — and those who get them. I know these issues are what we are all thinking about, but are they playing the loudest tunes? Uncommitted electors don’t read the score, but they do hear the band.

  • Yeovil Yokel 22nd Jul '19 - 11:44am

    Well said, Jason.
    Even if my preferred candidate doesn’t win I shall, after a few moments digesting the result, fully get behind our new leader (whoever she may be….) with a feeling of optimism (seasoned with a good dose of realism) that I haven’t felt for many years.

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