What the media say about the York Conference, part 3

Nick Clegg’s speech at the end of conference was covered by some, but by no means all, media outlets – you can read the full text of the speech here, and view a brief extract here. The Independent highlights Lib Dem Conference: ‘Rivals are airbrushing our role in recovery’ warns Nick Clegg,:

In a policy-lite closing speech to the Lib Dem spring conference in York on Sunday, the Deputy Prime Minister signalled the start of the long campaign to next year’s general election by emphasising the party’s achievements in government. Mr Clegg said the history books will show that “the country was put back on track by a party which had never been in government before”.

The other story to catch the headlines is Nick Clegg’s assertion that he intends to remain leader through the next Parliament, amid speculation about possible successors if he were to stand down after the next General Election. The Telegraph has Nick Clegg ‘wants to lead until end of decade’.

The Guardian covers both stories under the headline Nick Clegg insists he will stay Lib Dem leader regardless of 2015 election result.

The Guardian also reports Liberal Democrats show overwhelming support for ‘digital bill of rights’, not surprisingly quoting the reference to its own role in revealing the extent of surveillance.

Julian Huppert, MP for Cambridge who tabled the motion with the party president Tim Farron, told the conference: “I think we owe a great debt to the Guardian both for bringing this data out and for doing it in a controlled way. We did not have a WikiLeaks style exposition of everything the agencies do.

“The problems we have – I don’t believe there are lines of people at the agencies breaking the law. I think we, as parliament, as politicians, wrote rubbish law. It is our fault. RIPA doesn’t work, it is out-dated. Oversight has failed.”

Huppert added that commitments made by a former GCHQ director had not been met. “Sir David Omand said that recourse to secret intelligence must be a last resort. It is not a last resort if you collect the email as soon as it is sent.

“Sir David also said another brilliant comment: ‘Democratic legitimacy demands the way new methods of intelligence gathering are to be introduced should be on a firm legal basis and rest on parliamentary and public understanding of what is involved’.

Finally, the BBC discusses our IN campaign, and the big yellow letters that featured in many photos taken at York: Nick Clegg wants IN, but what about voters?



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This entry was posted in Conference and News.


  • Policy-lite because he knows most us don’t agree with him on education and health?

    He is good on the EU and civil freedom, but that is not enough when schools, hospitals and other services are being contracted out so cronies can make a fast buck out of providing an inferior service.

    I find myself having serious doubts about voting for my own party (though I will remain paid up for the time being to preserve my voting rights).

  • Mick Taylor 10th Mar '14 - 8:23pm

    The problem isn’t contracting out, it’s the contract they are given. It is perfectly possible to include requirements for high levels of service delivery when the private sector take over. Local government has lots of experience of this.

    The main requirement for successful private sector provision of services is proper regulation and oversight.
    I don’t care who provides the service as long as it’s a n excellent one. You can get crap service in the public sector including the NHS as well as from private providers.

    Please don’t talk rubbish. The Lib Dems have stopped schools being run for profit and poor providers have been sacked.

    Please don’t believe what you read in the Guardian about the NHS. Labour privatised it a whole lot more than the coalition, who have actually stopped some of the (Labour enacted) abuses like the private sector being paid more than the public sector for operations even if they didn’t actually do them. I refer you to NHS plc by Professor Alyson Pollack, no friend of the Lib Dems or the coalition, who exposed the secret NHS privatisation under Labour or Betraying the NHS – Healthcare abandoned by Michael Mandelstam, a man with no overt political persuasion, who totally exposes the destruction reeked on the Health Service by the last Labour Government

    The hypocrisy of the Labour Party on the HHS in breathtaking and we should robustly expose and condemn their record.

  • “Finally, the BBC discusses our IN campaign”

    QUOTE BBC” The Liberal Democrats have 11 MEPS, 12 if you count Edward McMillan-Scott, who defected to them from the Conservatives in 2010.
    There is real fear in the party that these could be wiped out in the elections on 22 May – a poll UKIP is hoping to top. Which is why the Liberal Democrat tactic is to frame the election as a simple choice: UKIP who want Britain to get out of Europe and the Liberal Democrats who believe Britain must be in”. UNQUOTE

    I find it difficult to accept that the British public will not rally round to us. Surely, they must see that the founding fathers were right. Surely, they must see that we need an ever-closer union. Surely, they must see that freedom of movement is no threat to British jobs, or to our schools or culture. Surely, they must see that qualified majority voting is the way to go. Surely, they will not want to prevent good works in Europe by exercising a rather selfish British veto. Surely, they must see that we are right to fight for Human Rights and that deportation of people just because they are undesirable or objectionable is never the right answer. Surely, they must see that there are people all over Europe who are in poverty and need our help. Once the British public start thinking about the issues, I am sure they will see we are right. We are the party of IN. We want more Europe not less. I am sure that if we keep putting our message across in the right way, UKIP will not stand a chance and we are going to sweep the board in the European Elections.

  • Mick Taylor’s comment is not entirely wrong and neither is that of GPPurnell. Schools are being contracted out to people who may have an interest in providing schooling or who may have an eye to the capital value of the assets nice the school is shut down, or merged with another. The jury is out. Perhaps Paul Marshall who wields such influence at the top of the Liberal Democrats (thanks to his huge personal wealth) might ike to provide LDV with an explanation of his interest is in this new form of ‘educational enterprise’.

    Whilst we are waiting — here thanks to Billy Bragg is an insight into how the super rich really see things —


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