Political

The future of the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition government

During the week I spoke at a Camden Liberal Democrats event along with London Assembly candidate Bridget Fox about the future of the coalition.

The three main points I made were that:

  1. As with the NHS reforms, the Liberal Democrats need to carefully pick issues that matter to the public and on which there is a chance of successfully pushing for big changes – with banking being an obvious future one. We need to show coalitions can work but we can do so whilst having adult debates in which differences show in public. We also need to avoid getting into a mindset of demanding that everything is done as per the Liberal Democrat manifesto and sulking about not getting changes if it isn’t. We didn’t win the election; we’re not the largest party; and so that’s not a realistic or reasonableĀ approach.
  2. We need to talk more and educate members and supporters better about what our core beliefs are as a party – community politics, of course, being prime amongst them.
  3. We need to treat members and supporters as active participants in the battles in government and against established power structures, not view them as passive spectators. That even involves learning a lesson or two from John Prescott.

And if you want the longer version, you can always invite me along to speak at your local party…

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