Tag Archives: caroline lucas

Cable, Umunna and Lucas demand Brexit answers from the Prime Minister

As Theresa May prepares to set out her five tests of a Brexit deal, Vince Cable, Chuka Umunna and Caroline Lucas have demanded that she and her ministers live up to the promises that they have made since the referendum, most of which revolve around cake and the eating thereof.

Open Britain co-ordinated a letter which is short and sweet. It’s the appendix in which the words of Ministers are outlined that is useful.

The point of the letter is not so much that they think the Prime Minster is going to take any notice, but more so that they can raise awareness of how far the Government is falling short of its own promises.

Here is the text of the letter:

Dear Prime Minister,

You have been Prime Minister for more than a year and a half and yet it has taken you until now to explain in any detail to the public what you believe the future relationship between the UK and the EU should be. It was your decision to rule out membership of the Single Market and the Customs Union, yet you and the Brexit Secretary have misleadingly claimed we can do this and at the same time retain all the benefits of membership.

Since the referendum, you and your ministers have made a number of promises about our future trading relationship with the EU:

  1. The exact same benefits as today
  2. No hard border on the island of Ireland or across the UK
  3. Fully negotiated by March 2019
  4. No payment for access to the EU market
  5. A complete end to EU rules and regulations
  6. Continuation of all EU trade deals and new deals ready to come into force

Listed below are the promises made by you and your Ministers, in your own words.

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It’s time for an All Party Parliamentary Group on Land Value Taxation

The rioting in Hamburg on the occasion of the meeting of the G20 this month highlights the oftentimes violent confrontation that exists between alternative theories of capitalism and socialism, as represented by the established orthodoxy and those that would seek to tear it down.

 At the heart of this conflict lies differing interpretations of economic theory, often depicted simplistically as left v right; Keynes v Hayek; socialism v capitalism; social liberalism v economic liberalism; or progressives v conservatives.

Henry George’s Progress and Poverty envisioned a capitalism that would allow all people to own the product of their labour, but that things found in nature, particularly land, belongs equally to all humanity. 

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 36 Comments

Liberal Democrats will not field a candidate against Caroline Lucas

Liberal Democrats in Brighton Pavilion last night decided not to field a candidate in Brighton Pavilion against Greens co-leader Caroline Lucas.

From the Mirror:

Lib Dem President Sal Brinton said: “ Liberal Democrats across the country are challenging Theresa May’s Conservative Brexit government. As in previous elections, a limited number of local parties are considering how best to provide that challenge in their constituencies.

This comes after the Greens stepped aside in Richmond Park to give us a clear run.

What is also significant is that close to Brighton is the constituency of Lewes which we narrowly lost by less than the Greens …

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Richmond Park is an important milestone – but it’s only the start

Well, we’re winning parliamentary by-elections again. Who’d have thought it possible on that awful night almost 19 months ago?

Liberal Democrats everywhere are grinning this morning. We’ve seen the brilliant local government results over the past few months. We saw the amazing Liz Leffman surge forward in the Tory heartland of Witney in October. Now, we have actually won another MP.

We shouldn’t under-estimate how massive a task winning Richmond Park was. It’s only been 37 days since Zac resigned. We had just over 5 weeks to change the agenda from Heathrow to Brexit and win the argument. A combination of clever literature, a fantastic candidate and an army of activists prepared to drop everything did it. Way back in the 90s when we were winning by-elections all the time, we had at least 3 times as long to make our case.

We also shouldn’t under-estimate how important it was that we won this. It was a seat we used to hold with a whacking great Remain vote. If we hadn’t, even if we had had a Witney type surge, people would have doubted our ability to change the political weather.

Sarah Olney’s victory has shown that we have still got what it takes to win the big moments. That is incredibly important for the outside world to see. Theresa May will be hoping that her MPs in similar seats to Richmond, where there is Liberal Democrat history, don’t cause any further by-elections.

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LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative Part 3

This week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference TODAY at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum. Part 1 is available here.

I  wondered if the sense of solidarity that exists between women across politics, partly because we all have to put up with a fairly sexist political culture, could be developed to help the process of cross-party working along:

In my experience generally speaking women tend to be more interested in working together and and finding that common ground not in scoring points. But one of the crucial things is to have confidence building measures at a local level so that some of the very real mistrust between parties can be addressed and, as much as possible, neutralised.

I’m glad she brought that up because we all have that baggage of bad experiences with members of other parties. Many Lib Dems feel pretty bruised by some of the abuse that came our way during the coalition years, especially when we didn’t agree with what was happening.  We do have to get past that, but how do we patch that up?

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LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative Part 2

This week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference tomorrow at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum. Part 1 is available here.

Part 1 ended with a discussion on a more collaborative politics. That’s not quite what we see even within the Labour Party at the moment. After what the Tories did to scare people witless of a coalition between Ed Miliband and Alex Salmond, what would they do with anything that involved Jeremy Corbyn, even if he were inclined to be a part of it?

Caroline is clear that this is not something politicians can stitch up between themselves:

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LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative – Part 1

The AlternativeThis week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference on Sunday at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum.

The first part of the book explores all sorts of ideas, from foreign affairs to social security and public services, where there is significant common ground between those of a progressive nature.The second explores how progressives could work together to beat the Tories. It’s a progressive antidote to the Tory dystopia into which we are currently descending. Though the book sets a lot of hares running, it doesn’t seek to outline a way forward. So, I asked Caroline, what happens next?

In the book there are all kinds of options discussed and explored and absolutely no blueprint not least because what might work in one constituency might not work in another.

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Caroline Lucas: Vince Cable could make you think eating babies was ok

It’s fair to say that this is not a headline I ever thought I’d be writing, but there you go.

The Guardian decided that it might be a good idea to take ten politicians and send them on a “blind date” with someone from a different party. They didn’t exactly push the boat out with this. The MPs met in the cafe in Portcullis House which is ok, but I prefer the public one off Westminster Hall. It’s always a joy to see what food combinations they come up with. They had an Earl Grey cheesecake one time I was there, which was a bit lacking in flavour, if I’m honest.

Probably the closest match politically was between our Vince Cable and Green MP Caroline Lucas. Afterwards, each MP had to say what they thought of the other. Caroline was generally very positive about Vince but made a bit of a strange comment:

My overriding feeling about Vince is that he’s so reasonable and so plausible that he could make eating babies sound an entirely rational thing to do.

The only thing is that Vince is generally right about stuff. If she thought that what he was saying about things like tuition fees and austerity was rational, it’s because it was. I was a bit miffed on Vince’s behalf by the baby-eating comment. She could have chosen a better analogy.

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PMQs: Tim Farron asks “Question of the week” – Ed Balls signals four runs

In my ever-earnest toil to prepare this review, this week I have been reviewing web sites which explain cricket umpire signals. I also checked the umpire signals for netball, American football and baseball.

There is no doubt about it. Ed Balls was signalling a four at Prime Ministers’ Questions. His hand was a bit lower than normal, but it would pass to signal a boundary at Morley Cricket Club.

For a change, I’m going to stand this review on its head this week and concentrate on questions from backbenchers, starting with Liberal Democrats.

Question of the week came from Tim Farron:

The world population

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Opinion: Caroline Lucas is wrong

As a campaigner on environmental issues since the 1960s, I have admired the way Caroline Lucas has publicly championed green issues. However, while I am sad that the Lib Dems have not been able to implement all of their manifesto, I am even sadder that Caroline’s lust for power has overtaken her commitment to the environmental cause.

While the Green Party has played an important role in helping inform the public, it has only a very small proportion of councillors and just one UK MP. The Liberal Democrats, with their far greater number of councillors, their participation in the Coalition …

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LibLink: Chris Huhne – AV referendum: why progressives must unite to vote yes

On Sunday, Liberal Democrat energy secretary Chris Huhne joined the Green’s Caroline Lucas and Labour’s John Denham to pen a piece for the Observer, calling on all progressives in Britain to vote Yes in the Thursday’s referendum on the voting system. It garnered headlines on the day thanks to a paragraph critical of the Tories, but it actually makes some very sound points about why all those who see themselves as on the ‘left’ of British politics should be voting Yes (as, incidentally, did Will Hutton in the same newspaper on the same day).

Here’s a sample of what Huhne, …

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Everybody loves us Lib Dems

I blame the Tories. Ever since David Cameron became their leader, he’s been determined to ‘love-bomb’ the Lib Dems. Love-bombing is the ingenious tactic by which other parties claim to believe in enough Lib Dem policies without, y’know, actually being Lib Dems.

Labour leadership hopeful Ed Miliband was at it last month. Then earlier this week the Greens’ Caroline Lucas made her pitch.

And now it’s the turn of the continuing Liberal Party:

We appreciate over the last few weeks many LibDem Councillors and members have become increasingly uneasy about the coalition government.

The fact that LibDem MP’s will be

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Opinion: Could low voter registration cost the Lib Dems seats?

The Hansard Society’s latest Audit of Political Engagement has added to the view that there is likely to be another risible turnout at the impending General Election. The study finds that only 54% say they are certain to vote.

The Hansard Society have offered some ideas about how to boost turnout. They suggest that more should be done to target groups such as the ‘disenchanted and mistrustful’. Apparently, a quarter of adults, mostly young and working-class, fall into this category of voters who distrust politicians but not yet entirely hostile.

But a report from the Electoral Commission would suggest that efforts to get these …

Posted in Election law, General Election and Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 7 Comments

Two new reports into online politics

First up, there’s a report from the Hansard Society which has surveyed MPs and their use of the internet (“A study into how MPs use digital media to communicate with their constituents”):

Usage of internet by MPs - Hansard Society graph

Posted in Online politics | Also tagged , , , , , and | 1 Comment

Question Time – open thread, 28/05 #bbcqt

Question Time returns to its previous time slot of 2240 this evening, and the BBC website tells us the panel will be:

Europe Minister Caroline Flint, Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan, Lib Dem foreign affairs spokesperson Jo Swinson, Green Party leader Caroline Lucas, UKIP leader Nigel Farage, and French businessman Pierre-Yves Gerbeau.

In the last week before the European elections, the programme is billed as a Euro special from London.  If the politicos can avoid being booed off stage merely for being politicos, there are loads of interesting ways the debate can go.  Caroline vs Caroline; Greens vs Lib Dems on who has …

Posted in Lib Dem TV | Also tagged , , , and | 13 Comments
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