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In full: Willie Rennie’s speech to Scottish Conference: Lib Dems will deliver better for the country

Here, in full, is Willie Rennie’s speech to Scottish Conference:

My elder son has left home and has started his career as a lighting engineer in concert halls and theatres.

So when I told him … I had a big part …. on stage … in Hamilton today … he was very excited.

I wasn’t going to miss my shot to make that joke.

This is the room where it happens.

That is the musical Hamilton. As the U.S. republic blinked into the light it was Alexander Hamilton who wrote a series of essays called The Federalist papers.

He recognised that for a country to thrive it needed institutions that shared power, allowing each part to thrive while having a care for the success of the whole.

What a message!

I believe our party is the proud flagbearer of that tradition.

I believe people can do great things with power in their hands.

Be aspirational for them and their family but caring about others whether they are around the corner, across the world or in the future.

I am a hopeful, optimistic person.

It’s why I am a liberal.

But even I am tested by what is happening.

I can understand why so many people are pained and troubled when they look around Britain today.

An endless loop of Brexit negotiations, where nothing ever really changes.

You know it’s not going well when the National Union of Groundhogs have gone on strike.

We live in a country where the political establishment in the two largest parties fails to provide any kind of vision or leadership at one of the most important periods in our country’s history.

Where the leader of the official opposition presides over a culture of bullying and anti-Semitism.

Jeremy Corbyn is turning his back on a people’s vote even when his own party backed it.

A man who offered so much hope to young people in 2017 has now driven even his most ardent supporters to despair.

Where the Prime Minister is incapable of explaining the point of her Brexit deal – and it’s the only job she has got to do.

Theresa May can’t even win over those who are paid to agree with her.

A woman who promised so much strength and stability but who is about as stable as Rab C Nesbitt after a night out in Govan.

Even the jam she promises for tomorrow is already mouldy.

What did this country do to deserve these two leaders?

This is a special kind of hell.

We deserve better than this.

Our country deserves better this.

We can deliver better than this.

So we need hope.

I am determined to provide that hope.

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