by Natasha Senior
I was considered a youth once, only a few years ago in fact. Yes, I remember those days. Casting my first ballot in 2010 in favour of the Liberal Democrats; the Hung Parliament that resulted; the slight guilt I felt for being complicit in hanging said Parliament. But never fear, I thought, the politicians know what they’re doing. It’s fine. The Lib-Dems have partnered up with the Tories.
But it wasn’t fine, because that whole tuition-fee-£9000-a-year-wtf palaver happened. This is when I felt political disappointment for the first time, and I have most other times subsequently.Continue Reading
by Hugh Lanham, Prospective Parliamentary Candidate Norwich North
I would not have stood as a candidate in this election if I wasn’t angry.
I am angry about Brexit
I see real fear and uncertainty in people affected by Brexit. Those working in foreign countries, those selling their goods and services throughout the Union and those whose prospects are just ripped from them by an unknown future. I see real costs for all ordinary people from the devaluation of the pound, from inflation eroding people’s savings and spending power.
Most of all, I see few benefits from Brexit for anyone. There is, of course, no £350m for the NHS and, apart from ‘sovereignty’ which means we have all the same laws but with a picture of a crown on top, one of the most significant immediate changes is a bill of £100bn. But, I believe the Tories are going to blunder on regardless.
If we ever get the opportunity to reverse the decision to leave the European Union I would vote in support of that.Continue Reading
by James Anthony
The concept of progressive political parties working together in some form to beat right-wing parties in elections sounds like a great, simple idea – and it certainly isn’t a new one. Standing down in a constituency to avoid ‘splitting the vote’ has been thought about and even practiced formally as early as 1903 in British politics in the hope of bringing down Tory majorities in elections. With the current Tory administration enjoying a majority in the Commons and very promising polling data, progressive forces on the left have again started talking about entering into some sort of alliance. However, it rarely seems to get put into practice, at least not nationally.Continue Reading
Repeatedly reading and writing about the seemingly never-ending demise of the Liberal Democrats is becoming tiresome, but 2014 showed that narrative to be as true as it has been since they first entered government. This year, the party lost 11 seats in the European elections, saved only one MEP and came in fifth place in terms of vote share. This has been on top of their sliding in the opinion polls, where they have been overtaken, first by UKIP and now too by the Greens.
2015 will be another difficult year for the party. The extent of the Liberal Democrat collapse will indicate the degree to which it will continue to exist as a major electoral force in British politics.
by Chris Jarvis
1. The Liberal Democrats will secure at least 10% of the vote in the 2015 election
Although current polling averages have them sitting at around 8%, the Liberal Democrats will enjoy a small upswing in their polling in the run up to the election and will poll above 10% of the vote. This will be a result of the tactical voting that has kept the party buoyant since the late 90s, and this will help tip them over the line to hold a handful of key seats.