Tag Archives: wilie rennie

In full: Willie Rennie’s piece for the National on refugees: “We cannot stand by and leave this to others”

Willie Rennie has been writing for The National, Scotland’s daily independence supporting newspaper, about what he thinks should be our response to the refugee crisis. Nicola Sturgeon and Labour’s new leader Kezia Dugdale also wrote articles. Below is Willie’s piece in full. The parts in italics are those which ended up on the National’s cutting room floor.

As a country we have a proud tradition of offering sanctuary to those facing persecution.

As far back as 1572, we provided safe haven to French Huguenots forced from their homes. During the Second World War, Nicholas Winton exemplified this spirit when he rescued 669 children from Nazi death camps.

The picture of a young child, drowned as he made the perilous journey across the Mediterranean with his familu, shames those who would say that we have no responsibility to help those fleeing conflict and war.

The situation facing refugees from Syria and elsewhere is desperate. They know the risks they face in making the journey to Europe. Thousands have died in the process. But still they come.

Last month, the new leader of the UK Liberal Democrats Tim Farron and I met with Amnesty International and the Scottish Refugee Council to discuss the crisis. They set out the scale of the challenge that we are facing clearly.

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Charles Kennedy’s family thank public for their messages, warmth and concern

Charles Kennedy’s family issued a statement this afternoon saying that they had been “touched beyond compare” by the “outpouring of warmth” for Charles.

They thanked everyone who had sent them messages and who had helped them since Charles’ death on Monday.

They also announced the findings of the post-mortem, that Charles had died of a “major haemorrhage” linked to alcoholism.

Here is their statement in full:

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Sneak Preview of new Party Political Broadcast: Scottish version #whyIamin

And here’s the Scottish version of the new broadcast, with a section featuring Willie Rennie arguing that Scotland needs to stay in the UK and the UK needs to stay in the EU.

He said in an email to members:

The European elections might be just round the corner but the Conservatives are flirting with exit from the EU. Labour won’t lift a finger to keep us in Europe and the SNP’s independence plans gamble with our EU membership and threaten jobs at home.

The message we are sending to Scots in this broadcast is clear. Only one party is protecting jobs by working to keep Scotland in Britain – and Britain in Europe. That party is the Liberal Democrats.

To secure the economic recovery and get more Scots into work we need strong Liberal Democrat voices at Holyrood, Westminster and in Brussels.

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My highlights of Scottish Liberal Democrat Conference

I’m a bit bleary eyed today. One conference is exhausting, two on successive weekends is positively foolhardy. Following that up with a trip to London for Federal Executive is craziness.

I spent the weekend in Dundee where Scottish Liberal Democrats held their main Conference. Over three days, there were no fewer than twelve policy debates, some of them incredibly powerful or controversial. Here are my highlights.

The Secret Courts debate

Yes, I’m biased as I proposed the motion rejecting the Government’s proposals, but the debate itself was very high quality. Liberal Youth co-chair Kavya Kaushik won the Russell Johnston award for the best …

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  • User AvatarVenetia Caine 21st Oct - 4:56am
    Three of us from Somerset, LibDems all, travelled independently, and I know there were more with other groups. So many there, we couldn't get nearer...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 21st Oct - 12:03am
    @Rhiannon - it was clear that you were born to lead chants, as well as organise Exit from Brexit campaigns:-).
  • User AvatarJames Marrs 20th Oct - 11:36pm
    Well im all for a peoples vote yet please dont forget the most effected like myself living in the EU many were DENIED a vote...
  • User AvatarJill Caudle 20th Oct - 11:31pm
    There were lots of Lib Dems elsewhere in the march too e.g. at least three members in our group from Salisbury for Europe (which covered...
  • User AvatarLiberal Neil 20th Oct - 11:21pm
    It was a great day and, as you say, lovely to keep bumping into Lib Dems from all across the country. Whether we win or...
  • User AvatarGlenn 20th Oct - 10:50pm
    Alex There is nothing technical about it. Whether or not other leaders would have done the same doesn't alter the reality that Mr Clegg was...