Posts Tagged “paddy ashdown”

The Economist is right. Liberalism is winning. Which could be bad news for the Lib Dems in 2020

by Stephen Tall on May 19, 2015

“Mr Clegg lost not because liberalism is under threat but because it has become mainstream.” That’s the striking, counter-intuitive conclusion of this week’s Economist, examining the reasons for the massacre of Lib Dems at the polls: Another explanation for the (…)

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The time Margaret Thatcher was empty chaired by the broadcasters

by Stephen Tall on March 5, 2015

Lord Ashdown told the BBC the PM’s decision to offer a one-debate ultimatum was “unbelievable” and said he couldn’t imagine Margaret Thatcher refusing to take part. (The Independent, 5th March 2015) This is, of course, rubbish. Here’s The Lady herself (…)

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UK decision to stop migrant rescue operations attacked by Teather (“unethical”) and Ashdown (“inhuman”), defended by Clegg (“Italian decision”)

by Stephen Tall on October 31, 2014

Conservative home office minister James Brokenshire defended the Government’s decision to withdraw support – along with all other EU member states – for future search-and-rescue operations for migrants in the Mediterranean. The BBC reports: James Brokenshire told MPs the change would “save lives rather than putting them in peril.” About 3,000 migrants have drowned in […]

Lib Dem party membership: the occasional ups and mostly downs since 1988

by Stephen Tall on August 3, 2014

The Lib Dems published the party’s 2013 accounts this week. The report included the latest membership figures, which showed for the first time since 2010 an increase on the previous year’s: up 2% to 43,451. Here are the Lib Dem membership figures since the modern party’s formation as the successor to the Liberal Party and […]

UPDATED: Sarah Yong stands down as Lib Dem candidate for marginal seat of Somerton and Frome

by Stephen Tall on July 14, 2014

It’s six months since Sarah Yong was selected as the Lib Dem candidate for Somerton and Frome, held by David Heath since 1997. Today she’s announced her decision to stand down. Here’s the letter she’s sent to her local paper, announcing the news: Dear Editor, I just wanted to let you know that it is […]

5 things Nick Clegg could do next

by Stephen Tall on July 4, 2014

My last piece of advice to Nick Clegg was to stand down as Lib Dem leader. He didn’t, and it’s pretty clear now that Nick will lead us into the next general election. Two problems remain, though, and we need to find ways of addressing them. First, morale in the party has dipped since the […]

Lib Dem MP on post-22 May leadership speculation: “Ashdown would cut my balls off if I criticised Clegg”

by Stephen Tall on May 18, 2014

Lib Dems are braced for a tricky week. This Thursday will see the first UK-wide election since 2010, with voters choosing who represents them in the European Parliament. Many voters across England will also get to decide who runs their local council. Votes for the local elections will be counted on that night and throughout […]

Will Ed Miliband “do a John Smith” and push for an early EU in/out referendum? There are advantages, y’know…

by Stephen Tall on June 29, 2013

Could Labour be about to “do a John Smith” to the Tories over the timing of an in/out referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union? In the 1990s, Labour wrought havoc on the fourth-term Tory government by (cynically) teaming up with the right-wing ‘Maastricht rebels’ to inflict damaging Commons defeats on their common […]

Paddy Ashdown pays tribute to Margaret Thatcher (and shows Nick how it’s done)

by Stephen Tall on April 10, 2013

MPs in the Commons and peers in the Lords have been queuing up this afternoon to record their tributes to Margaret Thatcher, including both Nick Clegg and Paddy Ashdown. To read both their tributes, please scroll down the page. Nick’s come in for some stick on Twitter, mostly from right-wing MPs/journalists, for instance Mark Reckless […]

Bloggers unite to oppose “botched late-night drafting” that proposes new press/web regulation

by Stephen Tall on March 24, 2013

I’m one of 17 signatories (on behalf of LibDemVoice) to a letter published in Saturday’s Guardian, reproduced below, which opposes the “fundamental threat” of the draft legislation approved this week by MPs of all parties which would regulate blogs and other small independent news websites. It’s not often you’ll see us, ConservativeHome, LabourList, Guido Fawkes, […]



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