Tag Archives: dick newby

Liberal Democrats launch national consultation on Brexit

Liberal Democrats are launching  a National Consultation exercise on the impact of Brexit on local communities.

All Lib Dem parliamentary candidates will contact businesses, health and educational institutions and civil society organisations in their constituencies to discuss their Brexit concerns.

Launching the initiative Dick Newby, Lib Dem Leader in the Lords, said:

This Tory Brexit Government are clearly floundering as they try to get to grip with the multitude of difficulties that leaving the EU presents. While the Government thrashes about, we will be talking to ordinary people up and down the country to understand their concerns.

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Lord Dick Newby writes…We have more chance of breaking the mould of British politics than we had in 1981

House of Lords chamberIt was a great honour to be elected Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group in the Lords earlier this week. The challenge facing me and my colleagues is straightforward. How do we help the Party occupy as much as possible of the centre and centre left of British politics – ground which is currently vacant?

Obviously we can do our bit by trying to defeat or amend the worst of the Tory legislation. We face a Tory government unrestrained, Labour are not doing their job as the opposition. It is the Liberal Democrats who have to step up to the plate and be the real voice of opposition. We held the Government to account last session on tax credits, trade union reform and refugee children. We will seek to do so in coming months, for example on Investigatory Powers. And if we ever see any legislation promoting grammar schools, we can guarantee it a rough ride in the Lords.

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Dick Newby is new Lib Dem Lords leader

Whoever runs the Lib Dem Lords’ Twitter account has a sense of humour:

Dick Newby beat Robin Teverson in the race to succeed Jim Wallace.

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What our busy peers will be up to this week

Here are some of the things our team in the House of Lords will be doing this week:

Monday: Roger Roberts will be pushing the Government to take action to relieve the situation of unaccompanied refugee children. Tim Farron has been pushing the Government to accept 3,000 at risk refugee children but David Cameron has recently rejected the proposal. The Liberal Democrats will continue to fight to find a solution which does not leave these children vulnerable.

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Liberal Democrat Peers: they’re your secret weapon, if only you’d use them!

Last week, the outreach programme of the Parliamentary Party in the Lords moved into its next phase. There is, unfortunately, a catch, in that, through no fault of their own, the earlier phases haven’t reached quite as far as they might have hoped.

The campaign for Liberal Democrat Peers to make one thousand constituency visits before the 2015 General Election continues – Suffolk Coastal were very hospitable – but too many Local Parties seem oblivious to the possibilities that nearly one hundred (very occasionally) ermine-clad Parliamentarians, with four thousand years of service to the Party between them*, can offer. I …

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Who will follow in Tom McNally’s ermine footsteps?

The news Helen Duffett posted this week — Tom McNally to stand down as Leader of the Lib Dem Lords — was rather drowned out by the Tory conference and the row over the Daily Mail’s smearing of Ralph Miliband. But as the BBC’s parliamentary correspondent Mark D’Arcy (no, not the fictional Mr Bridget Jones: different guy) points out here, it’s a role that matters lot these days, especially with the House of Lords here to stay for the forseeable…

The decision of the avuncular Lib Dem Lord to stand down as deputy leader of the House and leader

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Tom McNally to stand down as Leader of the Lib Dem Lords

Tom McNally has today written to Dick Newby (Lib Dem Deputy Chief Whip) to say that he intends to stand down as Leader of the Lib Dem group in the House of Lords.

Lord McNally’s letter is as follows:

1 October 2013
Dear Dick,

I will shortly be coming to the end of my ninth year as Leader of the Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords. Before that I served as deputy to Shirley Williams for three years. It seems to me that now would be an ideal time for the Group to select a new leader to serve out

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AD LIB Preview: The one with the kilt

AD LIB September 2013The September issue of AD LIB magazine hits subscribers’ doorsteps this weekend. And it’s wearing a very fetching kilt as Glasgow prepares to welcome the Liberal Democrats for Federal Conference. It even has Gaelic on the front cover. And a saltire, which is bound to annoy our nationalist friends, but, hey, they don’t own it.

There’s an article by someone you might recognise which mentions the Krankies and drinking cocktails out of a gramophone. I have to say that much of the cool stuff in that “Welcome to Glasgow” …

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Next week in the Lords: 11-14 February

House of LordsIt may only be February, but like schools, half-term is approaching fast (don’t forget, Easter is a bit earlier this year). And with the break starting on Friday, there’s still quite a bit of business to squeeze in. Curiously, there are no oral questions or debates initiated from the Liberal Democrat benches all week, but the agenda isn’t without interest.

On Monday most attention will be focussed on the Second Reading of the Welfare Benefits Up-rating Bill. Baroness Stowell of Beeston has the unenviable task of leading …

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Next week in the Lords: 22-25 October

I thought that I’d try a different format for the preview this week, so let’s see how it goes…

Monday sees the Third Reading of the Local Government Finance Bill. After this week’s drama, when the Government suddenly came up with an additional £100 million to support local council tax support schemes during the transition phase, one might expect the Bill to be passed relatively comfortably. However, Labour will almost certainly endeavour to ambush this if they can.

Perhaps more interestingly, and certainly a more emotional moment than …

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Lib-Lab cooperation: there’s one easy way to find out if Labour are serious

Today’s Guardian big-ups a call by Labour’s chief whip in the Lords, Lord Bassam, to his Lib Dem opposite number Lord Newby as a sign that ‘elements of the party are preparing the ground for a possible Lib-Lab coalition after the next election.’

I have to say on first reading the tenor of Lord Bassam’s note strikes me more as told-you-so than conciliatory, but maybe I’m being over-sensitive — judge for yourselves from this excerpt:

“The last couple of years have been a bit bruising for your colleagues in this house, and no doubt they will be looking forward to

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From the Lords: Dick Newby steps out…

As a keen observer of life in the House of Lords, I feel it my duty to explore some of the less well-known aspects of life there. And, as a photograph has come into my hands that deserves a wider audience…

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In other news… Lib Dems close no libraries, Paddick pledges 360,000 homes, & Newby is new Lords whip

Here’s a round-up of stories we haven’t had time to cover on the site this past few days…

Tim Farron: No library closed under Lib Dem leadership (LibDems.org.uk)

Last year, more than 40 libraries were closed by Conservative and Labour councils. In stark contrast, for the second year in a row, no Liberal Democrat-controlled council in England and Wales closed any library. Liberal Democrat-controlled Cardiff is opening five new libraries and Portsmouth and Bristol are also opening new libraries.

Tim Farron said: “Cutting services like Labour and Tory councils are doing will do long-term damage. Liberal Democrats are doing the right

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Chris Rennard writes: Dick Newby to be new Liberal Democrat Chief Whip in the House of Lords

Lord Newby (Dick Newby) has just been appointed as the new Liberal Democrat Chief Whip in the House of Lords. This appointment is made by Tom McNally (as our Leader in the House of Lords) and at the same time Nick Clegg has asked Dick to serve as Government Deputy Chief Whip in the House. Dick will take up his duties in time for the State Opening of Parliament on 9th May.

Dick is a greatly respected and much liked figure amongst all those who have worked with him (and in roles in which it is sometimes difficult to be both). …

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Coming up in the Lords… 23 January – 2 February

It has become abundantly clear since the Christmas break that most of the Parliamentary excitement, apart from that curiosity known as Prime Minister’s Questions, is going to come from the Lords until Easter, and the coming fortnight will be no exception.

Days 5 and 6 of the Report Stage of the Welfare Reform Bill will take place on January 23rd and 25th, with the Third Reading scheduled, perhaps optimistically for 31st January. It’s always dangerous to guess exactly how much progress will be made on Day 4, taking …

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Lib Dems back High Pay Commission’s proposals to curb excessive executive salaries

The High Pay Commission, an independent inquiry into top pay in the private sector, published its final report yesterday. Here’s how The Guardian reports its key conclusions:

The commission sets out 12 recommendations to tackle high pay. The main reforms include:

• Greater transparency in the calculation of executive pay to end the “closed shop” on pay decisions. At present, many people do not understand until it is too late how a vast salary – often composed of as many as seven different elements – is worked out.
• Putting employees on remuneration committees, a move included in the government’s own

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