Swinson: Lib Dems are the Chumbawamba of British politics


Speaking at the rally to mark the start of Liberal Democrat conference, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader, Jo Swinson, will describe the Liberal Democrats as the party that got knocked down but got up again.

She will say that the Lib Dem policy of "protecting our place in Europe, and our unity behind this goal, have helped us reach out and achieve our highest ever membership.

But she will warn of the rise of 'dog-whistling, racist, personal attacks' in UK politics that bubbled to the surface in Zac Goldsmith's mayoral campaign.

And she will call for Britain to lead the fight 'to promote liberal values, not shutting ourselves off from our neighbours.'

Jo will say:

"Our clarity about protecting our place in Europe, and our unity behind this goal, have helped us reach out and achieve our highest ever membership.

"We achieved a fantastic string of council by-election gains, and an impressive result in Witney, where Liz Leffman slashed the Tory majority in David Cameron’s own backyard.

"And then there was our stunning and oh so sweet by-election victory last December in Richmond Park, where so many people travelled from all over the country to help elect the fabulous Sarah Olney.

"That victory had deeper resonance too, because it showed how people from different party backgrounds could come together to send a message about the kind of politics we want.

"Or more accurately, what we do *not* want.  The kind of dog-whistling, racist, personal attack campaign that Zac Goldsmith endorsed in his mayoral bid against Sadiq Khan is unacceptable and should have no place in our democracy."

On the future of the Liberal Democrats:

"We Liberal Democrats have an important message about the very character and values of our great family of nations.

"Fighting for Britain to stay modern, green and internationalist, forward-looking, open-minded, and open-hearted.

"As populist forces rise up across the world, Britain should be leading the fight to promote liberal values, not shutting ourselves off from our neighbours.

"Our economic and political systems are broken.  We need to shape a new and inspiring vision for the 2020s and beyond.

"That’s what will beat the rabble-rousing, hate-stoking rhetoric of populists on right and left.

"Britain needs a liberal voice now more than ever.

"We are that liberal voice."

 


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