Posts Tagged ‘Europe’

The EU Referendum Result

27th June 2016 by Phil Comments Off on The EU Referendum Result

Anyone reading this will doubtless know the result of lst week’s referendum on EU membership, which the LibDems can only regard as a terrible mistake by the British public. It appears to have been a self-destructive protest vote with huge consequences unexpected by many of the people who voted to leave.

One very small silver lining for Royston LibDems is that our North Hertfordshire District – not, we must acknowledge, always a hotbed of liberal-sympathetic political opinions – voted heavily to remain.

To add insult to injury, since the result was announced, the Conservative Party has fallen into disarray, with its Exit wing showing a complete lack of actual planning for victory and the Prime Minister who called the referendum in the first place walking away rather than cleaning up his own mess. Meanwhile, the Labour Party is falling apart even more badly, with a leader who showed scant signs of enthusiasm for the position he supposedly adopted unable to command the loyalty of his own MPs.

This leaves the LibDems as the only substantial national party not only retaining unity but firmly committed to reversing this disaster and affirming the importance of the European project. It is becoming clear that, whatever the EU’s problems and the dissatisfaction of the British people, membership is vastly better than the mess into which the country is now blundering. We are gaining members, nationally and locally, as people who can see this recognise the need to support our position.

Please, if you want to help the country return to its place in Europe, consider joining the LibDems. And if you want to help out locally in Royston, contact us.

 

European Parliament Results

26th May 2014 by Phil Comments Off on European Parliament Results

Sadly, on Sunday night, the East of England lost one of its strongest advocates and keenest supporters when Andrew Duff was not re-elected as our MEP. The following is Andrew’s press statement on the subject:

This was the most polarised of the seven campaigns in which I have stood as a candidate for the European Parliament.

The financial and economic crisis has had serious social consequences, especially for the young unemployed, which took their toll on the popularity of the UK coalition government, but especially that of the junior partner, the Liberal Democrats. Campaigning on the doorsteps, fear of immigration, although inflated in exaggeration of the facts, was palpable.

The European Union is not given credit for the benefits of European integration in terms of jobs, trade and security. National political parties, in particular, have failed for too many years to understand, explain or justify the continuing need for a deeper Europe.

Nick Clegg’s tactic of challenging Nigel Farage was absolutely right. It is unfortunate that neither the Labour not Tory party joined the Lib Dem battle against UKIP’s simplistic nationalism.

While the ‘party of In’ was a good starting point for the Lib Dem campaign, I regret we were unable to develop sufficiently the idea that there is a better Europe to come, and that the status quo is not a serious option. We should have done more to expose the fact that Mr Cameron’s famous ‘renegotiation’ in advance of an In/Out referendum in 2017 is essentially spurious.

The Tories have no agreed idea on what they hope to achieve in this exercise, other than to blunt the populist appeal of UKIP – still less have they a chance of getting Britain’s EU partners to accept a package which calls into question the fundamentals of the European Union.

Over the next years, the Liberal Democrats need to develop their ideas for a reformed EU, centred on building a popular consensus behind a stronger democratic government at the European level whose main political goals will be to grow a sustainable economy which delivers the digital agenda and secures green energy.

We also need to re-connect the idea that our security as a nation rests on European solidarity.

 

Why You Should Vote Lib Dem

2nd May 2014 by Phil Comments Off on Why You Should Vote Lib Dem

As the elections approach, we hope that people will be thinking ever more seriously about the question of which party to vote for. The following arguments for voting Lib Dem come from the party’s HQ.

The Liberal Democrats want Britain to stay in the EU because we are fighting for a stronger economy – fighting to defend millions of British jobs are linked to our trade with the EU, and being in Europe gives us more strength when negotiating trade deals with global players like the US, China, India and Brazil. We are the party of in – In Europe, In Work. Liberal Democrats are working to defend millions of British jobs, create millions more and put thousands of pounds back in your pocket by making it easier for British companies to export and slashing red tape for small businesses.

Crime doesn’t stop at borders and Liberal Democrats are fighting for safer communities by ensuring that law enforcement and civil liberties do not stop at borders either. Our police forces need access to key EU crime-fighting tools to combat criminal gangs, terrorists and paedophiles, and British citizens’ rights need to be upheld across the EU.

Liberal Democrats are fighting for a greener future. Climate change doesn’t stop at borders, and Liberal Democrats believe it is crucial to work with other European countries to fight cut carbon, promote green jobs, reduce pollution and protect biodiversity.

Why you shouldn’t vote for other parties:

The Conservatives are now openly flirting with exit, and the Labour Party don’t have the courage of their convictions on this – they won’t lift a finger to keep Britain in the EU.

The Tories and UKIP are putting millions of British jobs at risk and jeopardising billions of pounds of investment by undermining our membership of the EU through their eurosceptic obsession. Their anti-EU ideology has gone so far that they have gone soft on crime. Liberal Democrats in Government stopped them from pulling Britain out of key crime fighting tools such as the European Arrest Warrant that are crucial in combating criminal gangs, terrorists and paedophiles. UKIP MEPs are amongst the laziest in the EU and don’t stand up for Britain in Europe when it counts.

Labour can’t be trusted with the economy at home or abroad. Labour’s reckless spending and failure to regulate the banks crippled Britain’s economy and Liberal Democrats in Government have been cleaning up their mess ever since. Not content with causing economic chaos in Britain, Labour MEPs have supported measures that would impose huge burdens on British businesses such as to end the UK opt out to the 48-hour limit in the working time directive.

 

Two Meetings: Climate Change and Europe

27th February 2013 by Phil Comments Off on Two Meetings: Climate Change and Europe

South Cambridgeshire Lib Dems are organising two meetings on key Lib Dem issues. Both will be open to the public.

Climate Change: A View from the Poles
With Dr Eoghan Griffin of the Scott Polar Institute, Cambridge (speaking in a personal capacity).
Date: 20 March 2013, at 7pm.
Venue: Foxton Village Hall.
With home-made supper and dessert, bar and raffle.
Tickets: £12.50.

The Case for Europe
With Sir Graham Watson MEP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament.
Date: 18 May 2013, at 12:30pm.
Venue: Foxton Village Hall.
With home-made lunch, bar and raffle.
Tickets: £15.

Contacts:
Susan van de Ven: susanvandeven@yahoo.co.uk
Tim Stone: timothy.stone1@virgin.net
Jose Hales: jose@josehales.me.uk