Willie Rennie’s New Year message

Last year Liberal Democrats started winning again.  Our wins in the May elections, our victory in local council elections and our stunning win in Richmond were great progress.  Those wins combined with our thousands of new members means the Liberal Democrats are back.  We started winning again because people want champions for an open, tolerant, generous, internationalist, progressive kind of country.

This year our ambitions are for the United Kingdom to remain in the European Union, Scotland to remain in the UK and Scotland to adopt a progressive programme to make us the best again. 

Liberal Democrats are the only party that is Pro UK, Pro EU and Progressive. 

My colleagues and I will make the powerful case for a Brexit Deal Referendum on the terms of the deal. It would only be right for voters to have the final say rather than just signing a blank cheque for the Prime Minister to agree any deal she likes no matter what the consequences. 

Liberal Democrats will also oppose Scottish independence. Scotland's place is with our partners in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. We need to put the politics of division behind us and focus on making Scotland a better country to live in. 

Our final ambition for 2017 is to secure a progressive programme for the governance of our country. Liberal Democrats will seek to negotiate a Scottish budget that delivers a transformational investment in education, a step change in mental health services and a package to tackle climate change. We want Scotland to have the best education system, the best services for people who need mental health support and the best programme to tackle climate change. 

So the ambition for the Liberal Democrats for 2017 is to be united with the UK and Europe and to be united for a progressive programme for Scotland.

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