Tag Archives: liberal democrat leadership contest 2019

Leadership contenders answer questions on social democracy, social justice and reaching beyond our base

As you can imagine, the various groups within the Party have been keen to question the candidates about their response to the issues that matter more than most to their members. Today, we publish, at their request, the questions put to Jo and Ed by the Social Democrat Group…

The Social Democrat Group are very grateful to the answers that Jo Swinson and Ed Davey, the leadership contenders for the Liberal Democrats, have given to our questions. The letter we sent to them with the questions is below.

At this moment of great opportunity for our party, we would like to thank …

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Ed’s Day – 3 June 2019

After a frenetic weekend, it’s been a quieter day for our two leadership candidates.

Like Jo, Ed had something to say about our unwelcome house guest.

And he visited a local children’s cancer charity.

Check out Ed’s website for updates.

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Alistair Carmichael MP writes…How Lib Dem MPs will approach the leadership election

Next month will mark eighteen years since I was first elected as a Member of Parliament. To say it has been something of a rollercoaster would be an understatement – so it feels good to be on the way back up again!

One of the things that has made the process of rebuilding so much easier over the last couple of years has been the really good team dynamic that we have within the parliamentary party. Most of the time agreement on positioning and priorities is simple and intuitive. When it is not then I think we manage our discussions and differences well. Even when Stephen Lloyd felt it necessary to resign the whip because of undertakings he had given to his constituents before he was elected, the process was amicable and we all remain on good terms with Stephen.

It is against that background that we now embark on a leadership contest between two of our own colleagues – Jo Swinson and Ed Davey. The choice for the party will be between two different styles and sometimes maybe priorities. Our greatest strength is that as a party we are united. We simply do not have the ideological splits that will probably split either or both of the Conservative or Labour Parties in the next twelve months. Whichever of the two candidates is chosen by the members will lead a united group in the House of Commons. I would be as happy to work with either Jo or Ed as leader as I have been to work with Vince for the last two years.

Our constitution gives a special role to MPs in the process of electing a party leader – it requires any candidate to have the support of at least ten percent of the rest of the parliamentary party. In a parliamentary party of over fifty that made sense. In a parliamentary party of eleven things are different. That is why Liberal Democrat MPs have decided to treat their role in this election as a different, essentially neutral one. As all MPs are happy to work with either Jo or Ed as leader our role should be to facilitate a vote amongst the members. We will do this by agreeing that two MPs will nominate Jo (Tom Brake and Christine Jardine) and that two of us will nominate Ed (Wera Hobhouse and Jamie Stone).

In nominating in this way they act on behalf of us all in saying that we will work with whoever the membership should choose and that they should make the choice. Of course some parliamentary colleagues will want to make their preference known in the course of the campaign (Vince, as outgoing leader will not, nor will I as chief whip) but that is quite apart from the nomination process.

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Jo Swinson launches leadership campaign

It’s official. After a teasing video last night

Jo made the announcement that she was running to be leader of the Liberal Democrats on Question Time

She released her campaign video on Twitter this morning

Her campaign website is here.

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Ed Davey MP writes…My leadership would be about liberalism, climate change and stopping Brexit

Climate change. Liberalism. Winning. That’s been my political story – and I want it to be the Liberal Democrats’ story.  And with the magnificent victories in this month’s local and European elections, the Liberal Democrats are getting back in the game. I want to thank Vince, a giant of liberalism, for his role in getting us here and his contribution to fighting Brexit.

Under my leadership, the Liberal Democrats would continue to lead the fight to Stop Brexit. I am writing to Speaker Bercow to ensure a No Deal Brexit cannot happen without a vote in Parliament. But I also want to make the positive case for Britain’s membership of the European Union. I’m an economist by training, and for me the economic case to stop Brexit is overwhelming. But for too long the British argument over Europe has only been made by reference to economics. Europe has also been a hugely successful vehicle for peace, and Britain must stay in the front seat.

I also want us to reach out to Leave communities and Leave voters –they are our neighbours, our friends, our work colleagues, our brothers and sisters. These divisions in our country have distressed me more than anything I’ve seen in my political career. I want to build a future politics where people – particularly outside of London – don’t feel frozen out or ignored and feel included in our great British family.

As Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, I worked for three years to get renewable power investment. We nearly quadrupled Britain’s green energy, making Britain a world leader in offshore wind power. By pushing hard for manufacturing investment, we created jobs and revived places like Hull, Grimsby and Lowestoft.  This is the sort of hope and investment in coastal towns and cities that can prove to Leave communities that Liberal Democrats care.

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Ed Davey launches campaign to lead Lib Dems

Ed Davey has launched his campaign to be Lib Dem Leader in a video posted on Twitter.

He has a new website, Ed for Leader.

Ed’s plan has three main themes:

Winning campaigns

Fighting for Liberal values

Tackling the climate emergency

And for those of you who have just joined the party, here’s a bit more about him:

Ed first got active in politics after reading Seeing Green by Jonathan Porritt as a teenager – and green issues have remained close to his heart ever since. After serving as the Economics Adviser to Paddy Ashdown, Ed won his seat of Kingston and Surbiton in 1997, when it was 106th on the target list.

From there, Ed has helped Liberal Democrats across the country, at all levels, get elected, including a diverse and majority female group in his home borough.

Ed lost both his parents as a child – and was a young carer for his mum before she passed away when he was 15, So Ed knows how challenging life can be – and how important the NHS is. Caring for the less fortunate has been the hallmark of his political career – for constituents and his campaigns for the bereaved, the disabled and the homeless.

In Coalition Ed began as a Business Minister, laying the groundwork for Shared Parental Leave under Vince Cable. In 2012 Ed became the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change where he quadrupled renewable power and made the UK the world leader in offshore wind. In Europe, Ed led climate change negotiations and won ambitious news targets people never thought would be agreed – so directly helping to get the Paris Climate Treaty.

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Recent Comments

  • Chris Moore
    Peter, good stuff, but as you're aware, many Tories see the EU as a socialist affront to free enterprise. The reality does not match up to your or their ster...
  • Peter Martin
    @ Martin @ Chris @ Leekliberal, I've always been puzzled why so many who claim to be on the left seem to have fallen in love with the most neoliberal of capi...
  • David Raw
    @ Alex Macfie "We were never even in contention in most of the Blue Wall seats we are now targeting". ...... and what makes you so sure they won't return t...
  • Cassie
    Tories lied to farmers ('you'll be better off out of the EU/CAP'). And the likes of Coffey showed an ignorance of rural life only matched by Labour's prejudice ...
  • Martin Bennett
    Chris Moore (and Leekliberal): P Martin is left wing on his say so, however in a choice between maintaining living standards for the worse off and Brexit, he go...