On the 4th June 2015, former Secretary of Energy and Climate Change and Liberal Democrat MP for Eastleigh Chris Huhne made an appearance on BBC This Week to give his view on the future of the Liberal Democrats. In my opinion I think this was an excellent report, pin pointing why the Liberal Democrats will always be needed within British politics.
Quoting from his report “Liberalism has plenty of modern battles to fight!”, and I agree with Chris. As long as we have the big guys trying to out rule the little guys, the Liberal Democrats will always be needed.
He pointed out many good liberal values such as the motto of tolerance and the states roll which gave us the principles of democracy, the rule of law, equal votes, gay rights and the insurance welfare state. And that liberalism is about giving the little people a voice and empowerment.
After the video link, he made a traffic job in defending Liberalism when Diane Abbott branded the Liberal Democrats a ‘dustbin party’ and said that Nick Clegg had trashed the brand of the Liberal Democrats, then Chris saying that the bounce back for the Liberal Democrats can be done much, much faster and making the point we were worse off in the 1950s when we were down to just 6 MPs.
Overall I believe that this report by Chris Huhne was both excellent and showed passion for the party and liberal values. I would personally like to see more from Chris.
So from the wise words of Chris “Get off the floor, dust yourself down, clamp on the armour, the fight back begins!” and boy, I can see this fightback being a grand one.
Since the leadership election for the Liberal Democrats is in full swing with ballot papers being issued I feel this is a time to reflect on the amazing job our last leader did despite us losing 49 seats in the 2015 general election.
It doesn’t seem eight years ago since Chris Huhne and Nick Clegg were battling to become the new leader of the Liberal Democrats. There was a massive commotion during the last leadership election about Chris Huhne allegedly issuing a paper calling Nick ‘calamity Clegg’ in which he denies issuing that paper till this very day. Overall Nick won with a small majority of votes over Chris.
Over those eight years It saw the party go through many changes and challenges, but properly the biggest challenge of all was the rise in tuition fees despite outlining in their 2010 manifesto that they would vote against any rise in tuition fees. However I believe that Nick was a honest man after braking this promise and admitting that he had broken that promise in a video message that would late become a song, I’m sure everybody has heard it. However the Liberal Democrats stopped the Conservatives from cutting university grants, grants that are vital for students who come from a low income family, something that the Conservatives are trying to do within this Government.
Thanks to Nick, he brought the Liberal Democrats into government by forming a coalition government with the Conservatives in 2010, bringing many of his top people with him such an Vince Cable who became Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, and his former leadership opponent Chris Huhne who became the Secretary of Energy and Climate Change.
Nick also made a big effort to communicate with the British public through his weekly phone in show on LBC, which was a huge success with many people phoning in with their questions for Nick on currently political issues. This shows that Nick was always willing to listen to the British public views.
Nick also had a clear view on mental health, making clear that physical health is just as important as mental health. Which shows to have paid off in the last government as 2 million more people were treated with access to talking therapies.
Overall I believe that Nick made a brilliant leader of the Liberal Democrats. Making many positive moves for the party within the coalition government despite the shocking result in the 2015 general election, Nick managed to rise above many challenges he faced from 2010-2015 such as the Eastleigh by-election. Without Nick being at the cabinet table, I fear that the country would be in a worse state than it is today.
Now lets hope our next leader will be just as amazing and brilliant as Nick was.
Many people say after the unfortunately and sad death of a great politician and Liberal Democrat Charles Kennedy that the need to fight for liberalism is dead, we are all liberals now so there is no need for the Liberal Democrats to fight for liberal values.
After our heartbreaking result in the 2015 general election with losing 49 of our parliamentary seats, many people are saying is there still a need for the Liberal Democrats within UK politics. Do I still think the Liberal Democrats are needed? And in my opinion in the words of Ed Miliband, hell yes.
Despite this result in the general election, there will always be a need for the Liberal Democrats.whether it’s standing up for gay rights, mental health or stopping the Conservatives from abolishing The Human Rights Act, you can guarantee that the Liberal Democrats will be there fighting with all their strength.
We are the part that gave you the £2.5 billion pupil premium, made improvements to mental health within the NHS by getting two million more patients treated by giving them access to talk therapies between 2010-2015.
We will stand up for the little guys when the big guys think they can get one over us and our country.
I know as so does many Liberal Democrats, the fight back will be long, hard and a challenge. But I know we can give Britain it’s liberal voice back in 2020.
Will we will always stand to build to stronger economy and a fairer society no matter what battles come our way. Liberalism has many battles left to fight. And we will be there.
So in the words of Chris Huhne former Liberal Democrat MP for Eastleigh from this report for BBC This Week, “Get off the floor, dust yourself down, clamp on the armour. The fight back begins!”
Many people saying that the Liberal Democrats were fools for agreeing to go into a coalition government with the Conservatives. Do I agreeing that going into a coalition government with the Conservatives was a mistake? No, not at all!
The Liberal Democrats during the coalition government faced many challenges such as the resignation of their energy and climate secretary and MP for Eastleigh Chris Huhne, however luckily they managed to keep the seat till the 2015 general election which saw the Eastleigh seat go to the Conservatives. Also facing huge controversy for breaking their promise saying in their 2010 manifesto that they would vote against any rise in tuition fees. However some may say that under the new scheme they are better off after they have left university with a massive debt.
However, without the Liberal Democrats. I think the country would be worse off because they stopped the Conservatives for making any unnecessary cuts.
The Liberal Democrats delivered a £2.5 billion pupil premium to help disadvantage children within school. As I was in secondary school during the first years of the coalition government, I as have many others benefited from this.
Another positive from the last coalition government was that the Liberal Democrats created 2 million apprenticeships and offered 15 hours free childcare.
As a result also the deficit was cut by half. That’s a huge improvement after the last Labour majority government.
As for tax, there has been given a £800 tax cut for anybody on low to middle incomes.
The Liberal Democrats also made a massive improvement on mental health within the NHS as increasing access to talk therapies as 2 million more patients have been treated since 2010. They also introduced the first ever waiting time standards for treating mental health patients, without a coalition government, in my opinion I don’t think these improvements on mental health would have been made.
So, as you can see. The last coalition government had a massive positive impact on the country. Despite some of the negative aspects such as the rise in tuition fees and the introduction of the bed room tax.
Without the Liberal Democrats stopping the Conservatives for making any unnecessary decisions. I dread to think of the state this country would be in today.
On 1st July, we lost one of our inspirational politicians and former leader of the Liberal Democrats Charles Kennedy.
It was a tragic day with many Liberal Democrats tweeting about their fond memories of Charles and how he has made a difference to so many people. He was not just one of the finest politicians in the UK, he was an inspirational human being and a friend to all Liberal Democrats.
Charles was leader of the Liberal Democrats from 1999 to 2006, and in that time in my opinion was a great leader. He voted against the invasion in Iraq and the party had also won 52 seats in the 2001 general election.
After his resignation as leader of the Liberal Democrats he remained as a back bench MP he still continued to have a great political career such as playing a massive role in the 2014 Scottish independence Better together campaign.
I’m sure everybody will remember Charles Kennedy for the amazing politician that he was and we will carry on his legacy within the Liberal Democrat fightback.
The resignation of Nick Clegg instantly triggered a leadership election as to who would take over as leader of the Liberal Democrats. Both candidates are brilliant (Norman Lamb and Tim Farron) but in my opinion there is only one man for the job, and that is Tim Farron.
As being a massive supporter of Tim of years, I was absolutely delighted when he announced that he would be running in the leadership election. One of the things that I like about Tim the most is his dedicated to the members of the Liberal Democrats, he voted against the raise in tuition fees and voted for same-sex marriage.
What I also think is brilliant is how he has recently signed the parliamentary motion calling for 16 and 17 years to be able to vote in any future EU referendum. He also takes the time to listen and answer many Liberal Democrats questions on twitter. I also believe that he is the one who will stand up to David Cameron about him abolishing the Human Rights Act. An act that is so very important to every UK citizen.
If you want a leader who you know will stand up for Liberal values and will help the Liberal Democrats rise again. VOTE TIM FARRON!!!