Norman Lamb: I can’t vote for this deal

Norman Lamb has been part of the MPs for a deal group in Parliament. He has from the start wanted us to agree the least damaging form of Brexit.

This morning he has tweeted a short video to explain that he will not be supporting this deal.

I think it is important to acknowledge how hard this will have been for him and to reflect on what he has said about the abuse he has received. We are better than this. Watch here.

Thank you, Norman.




* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

Read more by or more about or .
This entry was posted in News.


  • I’m pleased to hear it. I can tell it was a tough decision for him, and while it seems glaringly obvious to someone like me that an MP shouldn’t vote for something they know will make us poorer, I appreciate that long-standing MPs gain a stoicism when others vote against what you know is right. But this is one of those times when we have to find the energy to fight for what is right, because it will impact on this country for years to come.

    I was deeply troubled at the rumours that Norman might vote for the deal, and it’s fair that he was challenged on this, but abuse is never acceptable. It’s one thing to fight for what is right, and to present arguments for why you think you are right, but abuse is always counter-productive.

    My only outstanding concern is while Norman has said he won’t support the deal, he hasn’t indicated whether he’ll vote against it. I hope he will vote against it.

  • We should remember, that among the supporters of deal there are supporters of soft Brexit and supporters of hard Brexit. This deal doesn’t define, what kind of free trade agreement, or if any, there will be in the end of 2020.

    Some supporters of a deal will be in pressure to vote for just any deal, but if Johnson doesn’t bring a free trade agreement to the parliament, it will mean a no deal. I’m happy that Norman Lamb wasn’t fooled by Johnson. Some other supporters of a deal, like Philip Hammond (see the Times article below) weren’t either, but I wish enough MPs will see through the “deal” now in offer.

  • I suspect Norman grew up in an era of gentlemanly compromise, far from unique many poster on this site have. Unfortunately that age of compromise has died and we are faced with an angry age of absolutes. Those driving Brexit want a hard Brexit, for are own good no doubt, we have grown soft and need to he hardened by adversity ( they of cause will be exempted as they are hard already). When it comes to the final decsion no fudge remains, no compromise is available, just the devil or the deep blue sea. Well Norman choose to go swimming, unfortunately others are choosing to cuddle up to the father of lies.

  • Still waiting for LibDems to confirm that Stephen Lloyd will NOT be a LibDem candidate at the next election…

  • Glad to hear it.
    But please note the liberal in our name at all times

  • Is the LibDem leadership going to confirm that Stephen Lloyd will not be a LibDem candidate at the next election after voting for the withdrawal agreement?

    Why is that a question that cannot be asked?

  • Ross McLean 19th Oct '19 - 7:21pm

    Thankyou Norman.
    @Rob Cannon – Nobody is stopping you asking what you want to ask. But FYI the party leadership doesn’t make decisions about candidates. Under our procedures, if Stephen applies to be a candidate (and we don’t know if he has) he will go through the normal procedures of seeking approval and a decision will be made by the approval panel, just like with anyone else.

  • Andrew McCaig 19th Oct '19 - 7:26pm

    Rob Cannon,
    Stephen Lloyd is keeping his promise made to his constituents. He is Liberal to the core. Once he has discharged his promises I hope he will be welcomed back.

  • Eastbourne MP supported the amendment today! Or am I missing soemthing?

  • @ Rob Cannon My information (The Guardian) is that Mr Lloyd voted today with his former Lib Den colleagues. Please correct me if I am wrong.

  • Mick Taylor 19th Oct '19 - 8:11pm

    David Raw. You are quite correct. I checked which way Mr Lloyd voted today and like Norman Lamb, the other Lib Dem MP who wants to compromise on Brexit, he supported the Letwin amendment.
    Whilst I think Mr Lloyd was very unwise to fetter his discretion by making a promise to his constituents, it appears he is now being flexible. Of course his promise expires at the next General Election and if he doesn’t renew it then standing as a Lib Dem should not present a problem.
    In every other way I believe Mr Lloyd to be a Liberal Democrat and as our constitution says no-one should be enslaved by…. conformity. We are not some branch of the exclusive brethren, where all dissent is to be crushed.

  • @ Andrew McCaig “Stephen Lloyd is keeping his promise made to his constituents.”

    I’m afraid he didn’t Andrew. It just gets curiouser and curiouser.

  • Nonconformistradical 19th Oct '19 - 8:51pm

    Stephen Lloyd is among the list of indepdents voting Aye to the Letwin amendment.

  • Dear Mr. Lamb,

    the outcome you call “compromise” was never in the cards under May/Johnson. Their red lines always meant/mean the destruction of industry and agriculture, and accelerated destitution outside the center of London. Thank you for your vote today, and stop agonising now: any healthy and constructive UK-EU relationship (as a member or not) requires a UK regime-change first. Concentrate on that, and keep the EU-question open until then.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 20th Oct '19 - 1:54am

    I campaigned for him, voted for him, to be leader, said it then shall ever, one of the best people in public service.

    If he voted for against or either, his choice, in any party that ought to be so.

    In a liberal and democrat party it is not choice to vote as you feel right, it is the very meaning of the words. Liberal. Democrat.

    I think any who abused him, if a few are in the party, they should be expelled.

    After the due process of liberals and democrats!!

  • Mick Taylor 20th Oct '19 - 7:39am

    Martin. I made no such simple assumption. The date of the next election is currently May 2022, though all of us, I suspect, think it will come sooner. I suspect Brexit will not come before the next election, whatever the PM might wish. My main point was, that when the next GE comes, Mr Lloyd, if he wishes, will be free to champion his pro EU credentials, free of his hand tying pledge. I hope he does. In that case he would be able to stand as a Liberal Democrat. No other candidate in Eastbourne is likely to get as many votes as he has, at least in the short run. Do we want to hand a seat to the Tories by being churlish?

  • Well Steven Lloyld has made his bed let him lie in it. If on the grounds of being “nice” he is allowed to stand in Eastbourne as a Lib Dem candidate, be aware everytime you throw the fact at Labour ” You are the handmaidens of Brexit” they can quite honestly reply ” And you too”. If he supports Brexit he goes against what we stand for and no amount of well ” he’s a nice chap, a true Liberal” undo’s the fact as Arnold says “the destruction of industry and agriculture, and accelerated destitution outside the center of London.”, we can and need to avoid candidates like that.

  • chris moore 20th Oct '19 - 9:13am

    frankie 20th Oct ’19 – 7:39am Well Steven Lloyd has made his bed let him lie in it. If on the grounds of being “nice” he is allowed to stand in Eastbourne as a Lib Dem candidate,

    Candidate selection happens locally; the local party will choose Stephen Lloyd again because of his outstanding local record and the fact that he’s a committed liberal.

    He’s also a Remainer.

    I don’t agree with his stance on voting for the Withdrawal Bill.

    But we are a party which believes in tolerance for dissent. We should not forget that.

    PS What’s being “nice” got to do with it? Some of our best MPs have been anything but.

  • Catherine Jane Crosland 20th Oct '19 - 10:11am

    It is incomprehensible how anyone who calls themselves a liberal can make threats and abuse to a lovely man who has just been trying his best to make a difficult decision in very difficult circumstances. Especially in view of the fact that he has been in poor health recently.
    Remainers all too often assume that they are the “good guys”, and that being on the “right” side somehow excuses all manner of unacceptable behaviour.

  • chris moore 20th Oct '19 - 1:59pm

    Martin 20th Oct ’19 – 10:31 unfortunately he has badly let down and compromised the campaign of the national Party

    No, he hasn’t.

    There has been no national impact from his local stance.

  • Sorry there is just no way Stephen Lloyd can re-stand for us. 1. it would be a gift to Labour and the Greens and 2. Can he really commit to revoking article 50 after he voted 4 times for Brexit.

  • Sandra Lawman 20th Oct '19 - 4:15pm

    Well done Norman.

  • Rob
    I helped confine the Labour Party to the fringes in Eastbourne years ago.
    Stephen voted for the Letwin Amendment.

  • @ Ian Martin, “Stephen voted for the Letwin Amendment.”

    How he votes when/if the Johnson ‘deal’ comes back to the Commons should be the test.

  • William Crossman 21st Oct '19 - 11:15am

    If we expel Stephen Lloyd, in what way are we any different to Johnson expelling MPs? Let’s just remember his pledge actually won a seat for us that would otherwise have been Conservative.

  • “Let’s just remember his pledge actually won a seat for us that would otherwise have been Conservative”.

    Yes, he won it…… but with the same outcome on the only issue the Liberal Democrats appear to be campaigning on as if Eastbourne had elected a Conservative.

  • Alex Macfie 21st Oct '19 - 1:13pm

    William Crossman:

    “Let’s just remember his pledge actually won a seat for us that would otherwise have been Conservative.

    Perhaps, but at what consequence for the party’s longer-term prospects in the seat?

  • Andrew Cooke 21st Oct '19 - 6:59pm

    Not a regular poster on here but been a member for nearly 20 years and am a full fat hardcore remainer.

    I do hope (a) that Stephen Lloyd is allowed to stand as our candidate in Eastbourne at the next election, should he wish, and to be honest I’d like to see him offered the whip now but (b) that in the next Parliament, should Brexit still be a live issue, he just leaves himself free to act in what he believes to be his constituents and the wider nations interests.

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

This post has pre moderation enabled, please be patient whilst waiting for it to be manually reviewed. Liberal Democrat Voice is made up of volunteers who keep the site running in their free time.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?


Recent Comments

    No recent comment found.