The Observer says: vote Liberal Democrat

From today’s leader:

Nick Clegg is the most instinctively European leader at Westminster. That is currently a lonely position, but the Lib Dems have a decent record of taking minority stands that are later vindicated. On the environment, on civil liberties and on the mounting debt bubble, the Lib Dems were quietly but consistently ahead of the Westminster curve.

Likewise on transparency. In 2007, they opposed the Conservative move, tacitly encouraged by Labour, to exempt Parliament from the Freedom of Information Act. The Lib Dems alone took a party line for openness…

While MPs from all parties are tainted, the parties themselves are not equally guilty. A credible record of support for transparency and for constitutional reform reflects well on Nick Clegg’s team.

This Thursday’s vote is being held in a uniquely febrile climate. It should be about Europe; it will be about the expenses scandal. On both counts, it is a moment to reward the principled consistency of the Liberal Democrats.

Read more by or more about , or .
This entry was posted in News.
Advert

11 Comments

  • Europe is now becoming the “lightning conductor” for anger about political corruption: people see it as a big part of the problem. If you don’t believe me, have a look on the BBC website Have Your Say on the European Elections. Clegg should be making some noises about sweeping out corruption from the European Parliament as well. “Taking the fight to Europe” might not sound very Europhile, but it would at least contrast with Cameron’s sitting on the edges and we could put forward some concrete proposals that might make some headlines.

  • Robert C – Noooooooo! We’ve got so many anti-Europe parties I’ve lost count. We don’t need another one. It’s British politics and Westminster in particular that has this massive, built in and long term, corruption. It’s Westminster that needs sorting out. Nobody must allow the Westminster village to try to deflect criticism in the direction of Brussels.

    As the Observer has rightly pointed out being the only party to take a constructive approach to European unity is a huge strength for the Lib Dems. Anti-Europeanism is massive vote lower – just look at what it did for William Hague. The Lib Dems mustn’t be enticed by it.

  • Silent Hunter 31st May '09 - 10:16am

    Mark,

    Could you tell us if your party are about to commit electoral suicide and accept any offer from this criminally corrupt Labour Government to ‘join them’ as they try to ‘clean up politics’ (excuse me whilst I choke on that last phrase) LOL

    Your about to become the official opposition – for God’s sake don’t blow it now.

  • David from W5 31st May '09 - 10:23am

    Fighting corruption in the European Union doesn’t mean that you’re anti-Europe – far from it.

  • The LibDems gave up any right to claim a principled stand on the question of the EU when they chose a ‘policy’ of abstention on the Lisbon ConstiTreaty – having promised a Referendum on the EU Constitution (basically the same thing).

    The majority of the country is Eurosceptic – and a sizeable and growing minority want out altogether. Denying the people a say in the future Constitutional position of our country is not empowering the electorate. It is treating them like an irrelevance when it comes to the important issues.

    Incidentally, we all know the Brussels Gravy Train is even more profligate with taxpayers money than Westminster. Billions are lost and wasted every year: why on earth would we want to belong to such a corrupt entity.

  • Ignoring the manifest problems inherent within the European project is not the way to go. If people won’t put up with corruption and waste at Westminster, they sure as hell aren’t going to tolerate the even greater profligacy in Brussels. What I am arguing for is emphatically not an anti-European stance. It is based on the principle of “change it in order to improve it”, and God knows, Europe needs improvement. Also, I have to say that Boudicca is right: just because Lib Dems might want what is contained in the Lisbon Treaty doesn’t mean it should be imposed over people’s heads. A durable European Union can only be built on democratic legitimacy and sound foundations. The kind of “de haut en bas”, I-know-best-attitude really grates with the British people. Clegg’s decision not to offer a vote is a really bad move.

  • Regarding the Freedom of Information (Amendment) Bill 2007 – which intended to exempt Parliament from the FoI Act, let us not forget that it was the reforming, modernising Conservative party that

    “remains neutral on this Bill”

    – Source: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmhansrd/cm070518/debtext/70518-0011.htm

    As that song so clearly said: “Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right”

  • Look let’s get this straight once and for all. Few people know anything about the EU. Most care even less. Once every five years a large percentage of people can forget political correctness and race relations legislation and under the guise of criticising ‘Europe’ give vent to their racist and xenophobic spleen.

    If you doubt this you should spend more time on the doorstep and less on the Web. I’m off out canvassing now…

  • It’s my understanding that the vast bulk of the text of the Lisbon Treaty is simply a repeat of the existing EU treaties – so we hardly need to “impose” it – it’s already in place and in some cases has been since 1973.

    What would be helpful for all concerned, I think, would be a nice bulleted list of all the things in the Treaty that are new or changes from the status quo.

    I’m a politically interested person who spent three days in Brussels last year meeting our MEPs – and I haven’t a bloody clue, so how can the rest of the population?

    Personally, I think we need to have a long-term project of educating the electorate about what the Lib Dem position on Europe (great idea, very necessary, currently highly flawed) actually is. I believe this is an honest platform that could garner a lot of support but, even if the campaign season had not been overshadowed by the credit crunch, Gurkhas and expenses, this was not a message we were in a position to articulate.

  • I can already see huge chunks of this appearing in Focuses all over the country….

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?

Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJoseph Bourke 11th Dec - 4:06pm
    The libDem candidate for Stockton South has heeded Adrian's words and those of Vote for a final say (VFS) and endorsed the Labour candidate in...
  • User AvatarPeter Watson 11th Dec - 2:59pm
    "The Election Manifestos of 2017 and 2019 are explicit on this matter." The problem with this "Liberal Democrat Party policy to bring forward legislation to...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 11th Dec - 2:38pm
    Agree with Chris Moore...... and frequently amazed by the lack of nous, common sense and sheer naivety of those calling the shots.
  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 11th Dec - 2:21pm
    That's a well-argued article from Prospect Magazine that Peter Martin has linked. The concluding paragraph provide a good summation under the sub-heading A holistic approach:...
  • User Avatarchris moore 11th Dec - 2:18pm
    Mark Seaman 10th Dec '19 - 5:54pm No taxation without representation. But … to allow people the right to vote in elections when they live...
  • User Avatarchris moore 11th Dec - 1:55pm
    ...unitl that time, we will continue to poll poorly.
Tue 7th Jan 2020