Lib Dems launch national lobbying campaign urging Tory MPs to back WAB amendments Govt must strip South Western Railway of their franchise Lib Dems launch national lobbying campaign urging Tory MPs to back WAB amendments The Liberal Democrats have launched a national lobbying campaign urging Conservative MP's to "restore public faith in politics" and back amendments in the House of Commons to protect the rights of EU citizens and child refugees in the UK. The campaign was launched after Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords handed Boris Johnson his first parliamentary defeat since the election by passing three amendments ...

Posted by Mark Valladares on Liberal Democrat Voice

I wondered how many of the MPs who joined the Liberal Democrats only to lose at the last election would be seen in the party again. One is certainly staying around. Wokingham Today reports that Dr Philip Lee has been appointed by the local Lib Dems as parliamentary spokesman for the year ahead and quotes him as saying: "I was very proud to be asked to become the Wokingham Lib Dems parliamentary spokesman for the coming year and was delighted to accept. "With their large majority, it will be essential to hold the Conservatives, and their representative in this area, ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

Yes, you! Just stop it, please. You're wasting our time and yours. Our rules are here and we set out two particularly relevant ones here last weekend. That is all.

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice
Wed 22nd

Wednesday reading

Current This Is How You Lose The Time War, by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone In Praise of Disobedience: The Soul of Man Under Socialism and Other Writings, by Oscar Wilde The Idea of Justice, by Amartya Sen Last books finished The Raven Tower, by Ann Leckie About Writing, by Gareth Powell Once Upon a Parsec: The Book of Alien Fairy Tales, ed. David Gullen The Testaments, by Margaret Atwood Unsheltered, by Barbara Kingsolver Selangor, by Gerry Barton Next books The Critique of Pure Reason, by Immanuel Kant Arc of the Dream, by A. A. Attanasio

The Electoral Commission's round-up of its latest enforcement actions includes this about the Grassroots Out Movement: Name: GO Movement Ltd (permitted participant at the EU referendum) Offence: Failure to submit an accurate referendum spending return Decision taken: £400 variable monetary penalty due by 12 February 2020 Another one for the long, long list of the number of cases where Leave campaigners were found to have broken the law. If you sign up for my blog posts digest you'll get a handy one-a-day email with links to all the latest posts. You can also sign up for a range of other ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

The new Federal Conference Committee met at LibDem HQ this Saturday to set out the agenda for York in March. The new FCC also held a meeting in November where feedback from the Autumn Conference was discussed, and officers were elected. Geoff Payne was re-elected as Chair, myself as Vice-Chair (General Purposes Sub Committee), and Jon Ball and Cara Jenkinson as Co-Vice Chairs (Conference Communications Group). It is always difficult to sort through the motions that are submitted to the FCC for any conference. This year we did have a lower number of submissions - only 19, but there were ...

Posted by Nick Da Costa on Liberal Democrat Voice

Something you may have missed: On 31st December, Jo Swinson reflected on the last decade with a Twitter thread of photos, concluding by looking forward to the new decade with the words: Whatever the next decade holds, I look forward to meeting it head on. Becoming engaged to and marrying Duncan... — Jo Swinson (@joswinson) December 31, 2019

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice

The Liberal Democrats have launched a national lobbying campaign urging Conservative MP's to "restore public faith in politics" and back amendments in the House of Commons to protect the rights of EU citizens and child refugees in the UK. The campaign was launched after Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords handed Boris Johnson his first parliamentary defeat since the election by passing three amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill, including on the rights of EU citizens and child refugees in the UK. The amendments will now return to the House of Commons today. Despite No 10 confirming Conservative MPs ...

Posted by Aberavon and Neath Liberal Democrats on Aberavon & Neath Liberal Democrats
Wed 22nd

Post Truth and Justice

The past decade has seen the rise of so-called "post truth" politics. Instead of mere misrepresentation of facts to serve an argument, political figures began to put forward arguments which denied easily provable facts, and then blustered and browbeat those who pointed out the lie. The political class was able to get away with "post truth" positions because the infrastructure that reported their activity has been suborned directly into the process. In short, the media abandoned long-cherished traditions of objectivity and began a slow slide into undeclared bias and partisanship. The "fourth estate" was always a key piece of how ...

Posted by Cicero on Cicero's Songs
Wed 22nd

Four cheers for the BBC

I squirm with embarrassment whenever one of our politicians claims that this that or the other British institution or attribute is "the best in the world and the envy of the world," when it patently isn't. Candidates for this misplaced accolade are variously our justice system , our "Mother" of parliaments, our football leagues, our sense of "fair play"(sic), our inventiveness and maybe even our sense of humour. The one institution which actually deserves the accolade is the BBC, respected throughput the world for its impartial news services and admired for its creative dramas. So why are our politicians, particularly ...

Posted by Peter Wrigley on Keynesian Liberal

We need a leader without the stench of coalition baggage This is a phrase I hear a lot in the party. I see it under every Facebook post about the next leadership election. But by trying to scrub ourselves of the Coalition are we missing a powerful argument, one that rings especially true in those 80 conservative-facing second places? When we were almost wiped out in 2015, most voters that switched from us to the Tories did so because they liked the coalition years – a period of relative stability following a deep financial crisis – and they credited the ...

Posted by James Belchamber on Liberal Democrat Voice

He umm-ed. He aah-ed. And then he reached down through the engine compartment to the ground below and picked up the car's serpentine belt. Continue reading →

Posted by Simon Perks on Simon Perks
Wed 22nd

My tweets

Tue, 18:52: Seraphina, by Rachel Hartman Wed, 10:45: Stories (and a book review column) of Judith Merril

The home page of the Liberal Democrat website, 10:55 22nd January 2020 This week, Greenpeace UK have collected almost 600,000 signatures for their petition to the government to act now on Climate Change. The text of the petition gives a succinct list of initiatives which the government should be embarking on now to minimise the climate emergency: Now that Parliament has declared a Climate Emergency, we need you to act like it. For starters, that means: (1) Banning all new oil and gas production in the UK, including fracking (2) Tripling renewable energy by 2030 (3) Planting 700 million trees ...

Posted by Paul Walter on Liberal Democrat Voice

Next month (February 2020) both Bury Council and also all the joint authorities that cover Greater Manchester will be setting their budgets for 2020-21. In Bury, the Council (like all local authorities) will continue to need to save very significant amounts of money. Nobody knows what the Government's plans are beyond 2020-21, but the current estimate is that Bury Council faces a challenge of c £31 million over the next 5 years. This estimate assumes that Council Tax goes up by 2% a year. Bury Council has an unusually low level of 'reserves', so using reserves to fund year-to-year service ...

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

There's been a broken gully grid in Formby Lane, just east of the junction with Clieves Hill Lane and outside of Broad Oak Farm, for as long as I can remember and it's had a traffic cone placed by it to warn road users (particularly cyclists) of the hazard. But I'm beginning to think that another traffic cone is added for each year the problem has existed as it's now got 3 around it. Time to raise the issue with Lancashire County Council me thinks before the traffic cone family expands further in 2021, 2022 etc. etc. [IMG: 🙂]

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

Amazing to welcome @LibDems leader @EdwardJDavey to Alperton today to launch my campaign to be the next councillor for this area. It's time to end Labour neglect in Brent. Alperton needs a councillor who will work hard for our community and deliver for residents. #Anton4Alperton — Anton Georgiou [IMG: 🔶] (@anton_georgiou) January 4, 2020 There are four seats on Brent Council, London, up for grabs in by-elections tomorrow. These contests have been caused by the resignations of four Labour councillors. Good luck to Anton Georgiou (Alperton ward), Larry Ngan (Barnhill ward), Michael Brooke (Barnhill ward) and Jyotshna Patel (Wembley ...

Posted by Paul Walter on Liberal Democrat Voice

Just to let residents know the outcome of the Holyrood Ward Community Grants programme for 2019-20. All Councillors in Bury are given a small budget to help with community projects in their area. Here in Holyrood Ward, we pooled all our budgets together to create a 'Holyrood Ward Community Fund' and asked you to apply last autumn. Thank you to everyone who applied. Sadly we couldn't help everyone who applied. We will (hopefully) get another allocation from May this year, and we will let you know about the allocation process for that. The 2019-20 grants are: Clean Team Prestwich (new ...

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

It is all over social media, and quite rightly so, the Brexit MEP attending her last committee meeting before she ceases to be a member of the European Parliament on 31 January, questioning who will represent UK interests after that date. As the Independent reports, June Mummery, one of the party's 29 representatives elected to the European Parliament last year, suggested the loss of MEPs would make it hard to hold Brussels to account. She tweeted: "The big question now is, who will be here to hold these people to account while they still control Britain's waters, but the UK ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

As residents will be aware, Marie Curie is a registered charitable organisation that provides excellent care and support to people with terminal illnesses and their families. Marie Curie is looking for volunteers and has provided the following helpful information : "You can offer your time any day of the week, between 9am and 9pm, so that you can find a time that works for you and the individual that you are supporting. The type of support our Helper volunteers give often includes: companionship and emotional support; practical help; a break for families and carers; information on other support available and ...