Tag Archives: year in review

2018 – a year of missed opportunity for the country and the Liberal Democrats

This year was the year when hugely dramatic things should have happened. Both the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition should have gone. A referendum on the reality of Brexit, with an option to remain, should have been scheduled for early in the New Year and we should be celebrating a new feeling of hope and optimism as our politics changes for the better and starts delivering for the people who are really struggling and who have been let down by successive governments for decades.

Instead this was the year that media and the internet got very excited about Impending Drama, but that drama rarely delivered. Theresa May was supposed to be deposed in every season but she survived the post Chequers and post deal resignations. The greatest irony of the year has to be Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab resigning in protest at a deal he helped to negotiate.

The Liberal Democrats have had some electoral success with decent local election results and a net gain of 18 seats, more than any other party in by-elections. We’ve seen modest increases in our national polling and our leader is often the least unpopular. We would have hoped that as everyone came round to our way of thinking on Brexit, we might have reaped more of a dividend, but there hasn’t really been a national election to test that yet.

We should be doing better, though. We have diverted too much time and energy into developing a supporters’ scheme that we haven’t been able to capitalise on the thing that will get us the supporters and members in the first place – a strong message. We’ve done some good stuff on that with the new Demand Better strapline but we need to take it further. Our campaigns staff have excelled themselves with the Exit from Brexit campaign, too, but our overall story needs a lot more heart and soul in it. Paddy is so much in my thoughts at the moment, and I’m reminded of his very direct “Join us if you want to put an end to poverty and inequality” pitch. That is what we need.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 8 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJayne Mansfield 20th Apr - 6:16am
    @ Andy Daer, Greta Thunberg is coming to London next week. As well as speaking to parliament and MPs, she is hoping to join in...
  • User AvatarGlenn 20th Apr - 4:43am
    I worked in the property market and with housing associations. We had a lot of bedsits, a lot two bedroom properties a lot of people...
  • User AvatarMichael 1 20th Apr - 12:04am
    @Caron Lindsay 19th Apr '19 - 8:10pm It is not and either/or choice but both Attenborough AND Extinction Rebellion. They both have an important if...
  • User AvatarMichael 1 19th Apr - 11:24pm
    @John Marriott There are many reasons for taking action here and protesting even if other countries are not doing enough: 1. This argument can be...
  • User AvatarJennie 19th Apr - 10:45pm
    Oh lord I'm agreeing with Tony Greaves again.
  • User AvatarAndrew Hickey 19th Apr - 10:37pm
    " In the Liberal Democrats I often see a worrying attitude where members castigate success." No-one here has castigated success. People have castigated success at...