Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Clegg calls for "broken politics" to be fixed

At the University of Sheffield’s Festival of Social Science last week, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg called for radical change to fix Britain’s ‘broken politics’.

He challenged the two establishment parties to abandon their vested interests to allow reforms of our political system to regain the trust of the British people.

Calling for a Constitutional Convention, led by a ‘citizens’ jury’ of 100 people, to build a new constitution for Britain, Nick Clegg also set out steps that can be taken now including:

· Adopting the Power Commission proposal of allowing every voter to donate £3 to a party of their choice via the ballot paper in a General Election

· Funding to support political parties to come from cutting the cost of politics in other ways, for example reducing the number of MPs by 150 and cutting the Government’s advertising budget

· Banning political donations over £25,000 and limiting political parties to spending less than £10m every year, not just election years

In his speech, Nick Clegg said:

“People care, they just don’t care about politicians. And that should give us hope.

“If we build a new kind of politics, that engages with people in a different way, we can harness the side of people that cares, that is interested, that is engaged with society around them.

“My party, the Liberal Democrats, is in a unique position. We’re on the outside of the system. So we’re the ones who can prise it open and drive the change we need. That’s why I’m in politics.”
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