Proposals will breathe new life into the Liberal Democrats



I was delighted to be present as Sir Vince Cable announced a raft of new proposals to reshape our party this morning.

Vince has been an excellent leader of the party, a great servant to it and previously a tremendous Secretary of State, and during his political career he has worked closely and keenly with those working with and for the party. As a vice-chair of the Federal Board, I have seen his dedication and his spirit at first hand.

The proposals he announced today have broad support within the party, and should attract support from a substantial cohort of the British public. Quite simply, these changes will see the Liberal Democrats embody their name, becoming more liberal and more democratic, and will open up the party beyond its traditional membership.

What we need now, as Vince recognises, is somebody who can appeal to new swathes of the electorate — and we needn’t be restricted to choosing only from members of the political class.

There is a gaping hole in the sensible, thoughtful, centre ground of British politics for a party which is tolerant, unashamed of fighting against Brexit, willing to embrace the technological age, and determined to give as many people as possible a stake in society.

Anyone who is willing to articulate our values and take them to the widest possible constituency could be the next leader of the Liberal Democrats, and give us a chance of making a splash at the next General Election in the face of, as Tony Blair suggested this morning, the prospect of Corbyn vs. Boris in the race for No 10.

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