Tim Farron and Norman Lamb face a live audience on Victoria Derbyshire

This morning leadership candidates Tim Farron and Norman Lamb appeared on the Victoria Derbyshire programme on BBC2. They were quizzed by Victoria and a live audience. See how they got on below:

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  • Good stuff from each. Its always interesting that some of the public just don’t understand that it wasn’t a Lib Dem Government !

  • I think we should listen the to the audience and vote for Tim

  • Why does Norman Lamb keep talking about religeon – he is a bit obsessed about it!

  • Yes, Jenny. Beginning to get the feeling Lamb is less liberal on religion than Farron is on equal marriage…

  • Peter Watson 24th Jun '15 - 12:53am

    Norman almost won me over by being a Norwich City fan, but lost me again pretty quickly.
    Near the end of the video though, I was a bit confused by his outrage that the “Tories are planning” to require migrants from outside Europe who are earning less than £35000 to leave the country after 6 years in the UK. This is because of a decision by the coalition government of which Lib Dems were a part in 2012, and at a time when (according to Wikipedia) Jeremy Browne was in the Home Office and Norman Lamb was Minister of State for Employment Relations. It seems a bit pointless to be upset about it now instead of when he might have been able to do something about it.

  • Peter Watson 24th Jun '15 - 1:08am

    Oops, I think Browne was in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office at that time and Lynne Featherstone was in the Home Office.

  • jenny 23rd Jun ’15 – 11:43pm
    Why does Norman Lamb keep talking about religeon – he is a bit obsessed about it!

    We should be debating religion as it’s one of the biggest issues democratic and potentially liberal societies face. In the person of Tory MP Eric Pickles we had a taste of what religiously driven politicians can get up to when let loose.

  • Has Norman said anything about foreign policy and human rights yet? If so I would be glad to be pointed in the right direction.

  • Simon Banks 24th Jun '15 - 9:28am

    Right, Robert, so someone should have stopped Gladstone way back. Using Pickles is cheap: he’s just a rather unintelligent bully and his behaviour to local government has nothing to do with religion. The roots of British Liberalism in nonconformist religion are strong. Doesn’t mean Liberals now have to be religious – but it doesn’t mean they can’t be!

    I hope at the very least people could accept that to be “Liberal on religion” and to be religious need not be in opposition.

  • Nadine Storey 24th Jun '15 - 10:10am

    Really enjoyed this. I am now thinking we definitely need both of these guys and am therefore pleased to see mutual respect as, either way, they will need to work together going forwards.. I am thinking Tim for leader (based on his more passionate style of delivery) but Norman must definitely be given a significant share of voice as I believe he can recruit different people into the liberal movement.

    By the way, I am an atheist yet I tend towards Tim’s view on abortion. It offends me when moral standpoints are assumed to be predicated on religious faith. Surely these more personal moral issues are not party political anyway. Please let’s keep these out of the leadership debates.

  • (Matt Bristol) 24th Jun '15 - 10:19am

    What Simon Banks said, pretty much.

    Eric Pickles’ lack of discernment and judgement in responding to his religious beliefs (what they are, I am rather unsure of) and pushing of his personal Tory agenda (and what I would say is his cynical attempt to effectively use his religion to generate easy knee-jerk headlines to persuade his co-religionists to vote for his party) needn’t be used as a guidances for how any other politician with religious convictions may act.

    I find the logic Robert is using here as warped as saying: “Jeremy Corbyn and Jeremy Browne are both called Jeremy and have beards. Therefore I won’t vote for Jeremy Brown because he is a dangerous 70s-style radical socialist bent on using the state to intevene in ordinary peoples’ lives.”

  • Graham Goldsmid 24th Jun '15 - 10:25am

    I was one of those members called and asked about my opinion on Tim Farron
    I knew all the background about his faith etc so realised what was going on with the loaded questions etc
    Norman Lamb is a good Mp and was a good minister but for me Tim Farron is the best person to take this party forward
    and rebuild.

  • Bill le Breton 24th Jun '15 - 10:40am

    Jenny asks, “Why does Norman Lamb keep talking about religeon – he is a bit obsessed about it!”

    Answer: because it is THE wedge issue in this campaign – or specifically it appears to be the prime wedge issue chosen by Team Lamb to win this election.

    The classic modern campaign, since Clinton, is to converge on your opponent’s strong policy points and concentrate the attention of the electorate on an opponent’s (perceived) personal frailties – in this case the opponent’s ‘religiosity’: you point to what that ‘may’ have led him to have done in the past as a true pointer to what ‘dreadful’ things you may start to worry he may do in the future.

    You may argue that this is a service to the electorate, as Mark Gettleson said to the BBC: “I think that as long as the questions asked and points made are fair and factual, then Liberal Democrat members deserve to know the full facts about their leadership candidates – and they should know them before they vote, not after,”

    Or you may think it not the type of campaigning approach appropriate for an internal leadership election.

    But not to understand the campaign process is frankly naive.

    And not to understand that this is a high level campaign policy decision, even if distanced from the candidate himself, is scarcely credible.

  • Reading some posts and listening to Norman, one could be forgivent for thinking a lot of party members do not think you could be liberal and have religious faith. Yet you can have moral values that dictates your actions and get away with it. Whether you are atheist, christian ,or muslim , you have values. The only difference is the source and inspiration of these values. Most values cut across beliefs and are almost universal.
    Tim’s christian values seem to be on the spotlight just because of one issue: ssm. There are many areas where his values are applauded by the same people who think his christian values are not compatible with Liberalism. I defy any of us who can demonstrate to je they have ALL the liberal values required to be a 100% luberal. Tim has been party president and nobody can show me where his decision was clouded by his christian beliefs to the detriment of Liberalism. It seems to me some people want liberalism in areas they chose but are not prepared to be liberal with other people’s choices. Luckily, I know some members who will be supporting Tim because they think some of the criticism levelled at him are totally illeberal. I am a christian and proud to be one but I have voted for leaders who totally disagree with Christianity and given the opportunity, I would support any leader , not because they are christian but because they are liberal enough to recognise the rights of individuals to choose what is going to shape their values, as ultimately, this is what I believe to be good for the party and the country. Tolerance works both ways.

  • Both assuaged concerns that I have, so I was pleased to have listened through the whole clip.

    The religion stuff was pursued by Victoria Derbyshire and the audience that her programme had selected. Overall, both Tim and Norman toned down the significance. I certainly think that those who claim that Norman is obsessed or is using it as some kind of devious strategy are the ones with the agenda.

  • Adrian Hyyrylainen-T 24th Jun '15 - 7:16pm

    The issue is not whether Tim should feel free to follow his religious beliefs – of course he is. The issue is what will Tim do when a policy proposal cuts across his religious beliefs.? Would he have been able to lead the party and fight the way Nick did for same-sex marriage? There were many times when the policy could have fallen – because of the huge campaign by the orthodox religions against it. There are plenty of committed Christians who support same sex marriage – because they want to enable people to have the same rights as heterosexual people. This was an equal rights and human rights issue. The issue is certainly complex – but it is pretty fundamental – and I don’t think it is right to simply accuse the Lamb team of negative campaigning because for many of us this is an issue. Tim has given his reasons and members can make up their minds as to whether this matters or not. They are both excellent candidates – but it is not illiberal to raise the issue.

  • Elaine Woodard 24th Jun '15 - 8:21pm

    Norman Lamb is getting better each time I see him and I thought he came across really well. Having said that I’m still going to vote for Tim Farron – our priority now is to rebuild and I think he is the best person to do that.

  • Kevin Manley 24th Jun '15 - 10:10pm

    @Jenny & Bill – bang on the money I reckon. I quite like Norman but it reeks a bit for him to come out and apologise for the volunteers who were push polling and then continually bringing up the same issues at every opportunity, including on this programme. It wouldn’t surprise me if they were deliberately breaking the rules and then deliberately exposed that themselves to move the spotlight more firmly on to equal marriage and abortion, which it certainly has had the effect of doing. I am more in Norman’s camp on religion in that I am agnostic / atheist but am supporting Tim for leader for numerous reasons. But even if Tim does have a view on, for example, abortion that doesn’t “marry” up (see what I did there ;-)) with the rest of the party, he doesn’t get to make the policy. His view would be no less valid than the rest of us though, and he is entitled to argue for them.

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