Tag Archives: east dunbartonshire

Jo Swinson says her constituents are proud she’s taking on Boris Johnson

Jo Swinson has given two major press interviews in the past two days – one to Scotland on Sunday talking about her fight to retain her East Dunbartonshire seat and one to The Times (£) which is more about what she and the Liberal Democrats offer nationally – an open hearted, open minded outward-looking liberal country.

In the Times piece, she talks about the unique Lib Dem offer:

The 39-year-old leader of the Liberal Democrats is from a different generation to Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn (16 years younger than the prime minister and 31 years younger than the Labour leader) with a baby and a five-year-old to juggle on the campaign trail while her husband is away on business. She brought a bubble machine and popcorn maker to the Lib Dems’ election launch. “I think I am quite different to the other leaders,” she says. “They’ve all got an outlook which is very much harking back to the past, whether that’s the 1870s or the 1970s, and I’m very focused on the future we build, one that is open-hearted, open-minded, outward-looking, internationalist and liberal.”

And she tackles the issue of this week, which has been attacks from Labour for not standing down in their favour:

For those still in the Labour Party, many are conflicted but ultimately they are standing on a platform to get the hard left and Jeremy Corbyn into No 10 . . . Labour is not a party of Remain.” As for the Brexit Party standing down candidates in Tory-held seats, she says: “It sends a very clear message to moderate One Nation Conservatives about where Boris Johnson is — he is at one with Nigel Farage and there are a lot of Conservative voters who are very unhappy at that.”

She also describes the challenges of returning to work as a minister after maternity leave.

In the Scotland on Sunday piece, she talked about how she was on the side of most people in her East Dunbartonshire seat:

“Both are live issues – and that’s different to 2017 when it was much more about the prospect of an indyref. Now, with where the Brexit process has got to, people are much more concerned about that.

“This is a constituency where around two-thirds of people voted to stay in the UK, and are around three-quarters voted to stay in the EU. It’s very clear that people in East Dunbartonshire want Scotland to stay in the UK and the UK to be in the EU. It’s only the Liberal Democrats that are standing up for that position.”

And when she’s going round the doors, her constituents like her new role as leader:

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Voter to Jo Swinson: “We’ve missed you”

The New Statesman has a profile of the East Dunbartonshire seat where Jo Swinson is hoping to regain the seat she lost to the SNP in 2015.

It’s clear that she is held in great affection by the voters:

The Liberal Democrat candidate is happy to play on her personal connection to the constituency where she was raised. This election has come so soon after the last one, at which Swinson lost the seat to the SNP, that she can run on her record. She had a reputation as a hard-working local representative, and voters seem to have retained a remarkable fondness for her. One young mum I encounter confirms Swinson has her vote, and then adds: “I feel connected to you. We’ve missed you.”

Another supporter admits that Swinson’s personality is swaying her choice. She dismisses sitting MP John Nicolson – “I don’t like him. Jo did more for us” – before turning to Swinson and softly saying: “I’m so glad you’re back.”

It’s impossible to tell if there are tears in Swinson’s eyes as she steps away from the doorstep, or just drops from the relentless rain. “When you’ve lost your seat and you know you worked hard, you know it’s not personal,” she says. “But still it’s nice when people actually say stuff like that and confirm it.”

And the New Statesman is on to the SNP’s spurious claims (which they are making in Edinburgh West and North East Fife too) that it’s the Tories that are their main opposition. 

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Fun on the campaign trail #1: Willie Rennie and Jo Swinson as Di Caprio and Winslet – or Sergei and Aleksandr

Back in 2005, there was a very dignified photo-op during the election campaign that had then Scottish Lib Dem Leader and Jo Swinson during her first election on a canal barge. It was played time and time again on the news.

Yesterday, Willie Rennie and Jo Swinson launched her campaign to win back East Dunbartonshire on a boat in Kirkintilloch.

The image from that is a bit more fun and perhaps not quite as classy as the 2005 event.

That made it into the Times Red Box briefing.

And there are signs that the Scottish Lib Dem press office are rivalling their London counterparts in the sass department.

Here’s that Meerkat Moment.

And here’s the video that Willie and Jo made to launch her campaign:

At the same time, Theresa May was in Scotland at on of her tightly controlled events where she’s allegedly meeting ordinary people so that she doesn’t need to subject herself to the scrutiny of millions on a tv debate. Willie’s had this to say about her visit:

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#LibDemFightback campaigners busy on the streets this weekend

There are some fantastic, smiling action photos coming out from Lib Dem campaigners this weekend!

Victor Chamberlain has been out twice, campaigning for Simon Hughes with colleagues at the Elephant and Castle:


…and at Borough and Bankside:

Tim Farron visited Leeds – and Leeds Young Liberals captured their excitement at the leader’s arrival:

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WATCH: Jo Swinson on Question Time

Jo Swinson was on Question Time on Thursday and she was fabulous. She really took on Tory minister Damian Green with pithy and sharp interventions.

Here she is taking about the awful Rape Clause:

And on hard Brexit:

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Liberal Democrat councillors withdraw from East Dunbartonshire administration

Liberal Democrat Councillors in East Dunbartonshire have withdrawn from the Council’s administration. The three councillors had been in coalition with Labour and Conservatives since 2012. The move leaves Labour and Conservatives with 11 councillors facing an opposition of 13. The two parties will continue as a minority administration.

From the BBC:

It said it would withdraw from the arrangement amid an ongoing row related to a sports complex in Bishopbriggs.

If the move goes ahead, Labour and the Conservatives will continue as a minority administration.

Leader of the Liberal Democrat group, Councillor Ashay Ghai, said: “When we entered coalition in 2012 all parties agreed that we would not put forward recommendations unless all three groups agreed.

“However, Labour and Conservatives broke the agreement by forcing through proposals to underwrite a further £4.4m for the Huntershill sports complex when there were so many unanswered questions.

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Poll sensation for Jo Swinson – new poll shows she’s ahead of SNP in tight race

A new poll carried out by Survation for the Liberal Democrats has shown that Jo Swinson is in a tight race with the SNP in her East Dunbartonshire constituency.

The Kirkintilloch Herald reports:

The poll, with methodology designed by the LibDems but carried out by an independent company, shows a mere two per cent divide between Ms Swinson from SNP candidate John Nicholson.

It also predicts that Labour will take just 16 per cent of the vote and the Conservatives just 13 per cent.
The results were: Lib Dem 34.5%, SNP 32.1%, Lab 16.2%, Con 13.1%, Green 2%, Ukip 0.7%

A total of 413 people took part in the telephone poll with seven questions, carried out on April 9.

We can now bring you the full analysis including all the tables which you can access here.

This fieldwork was carried out in the wake of high profile visits to the constituency by both Nick Clegg and Nicola Sturgeon.

Jo’s incredibly well known, and popular even amongst other parties’ voters. There can’t be very many MPs whose name is recognised by 96.7% of people. 60% of people overall have a favourable opinion of Jo.  56.1% of people who currently say they are voting Labour think favourably of her, as do 45.1% of those currently saying they will vote Conservative and 68% of those who have not yet decided who they will vote for.

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Jo Swinson target of anonymous smear campaign

This how today’s Sun reports the story:

A LIB-DEM MP has called in cops after an anonymous smear campaign was launched against her. Trouble-makers claiming to represent the East Dunbartonshire Taxpayers’ Alliance have sent letters to hundreds of voters across the region blackening the name of Jo Swinson, who is standing again on May 6. …

Ms Swinson said: “I’ve reported it to the police and they are investigating because the anonymous nature of this makes it illegal. It is clearly designed to damage my chances but I think a lot of people have seen through it.”

She saddedd : “This is

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    I am a man but the things that put me off may put others off too. Length. If you are going to write long screeds,...
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    Slogans to ponder for us to go forward- Rejoin ,fairness for all not just those with money (for Brexit seems to be beginning to have...
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    Woe, that last should have read Jo Swinson, new phone and bad light combined...
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    Yeah... I think I'll spend this weekend knocking on doors locally. There's absolutely nothing on that agenda to grab me. The argument that we can't...
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    "Now 50% of our regular editors are women, including our senior editor, Caron Lindsay, so I don’t think anyone can claim we suffer from unconscious...