Responding to the news that [Tiverton MP] Neil Parish has had the Conservative whip withdrawn after two female MPs said he had watched pornography in the Commons, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader Daisy Cooper MP said:
"If Boris Johnson had any shred of decency left, he would tell Neil Parish to resign immediately.
“In any other workplace this would count as gross misconduct and the person responsible would lose their job. Parliament should be no different.
“We don't need to insult the women MPs who witnessed this with a lengthy investigation. All his bosses need to do is ask for his devices and look at his viewing history, this isn’t rocket science.”
Saturday, April 30, 2022
Thursday, April 28, 2022
Responding to Chancellor Rishi Sunak claiming it would be "silly" to give more support on energy bills, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Christine Jardine MP said:
"These comments are totally tone deaf in the middle of a cost of living emergency.
“Families being hit by soaring energy bills need support right now, instead Rishi Sunak is clobbering them with unfair taxes.
"The Chancellor should offer an emergency tax cut to help families now, not make more vague promises about the future."
Wednesday, April 27, 2022
Following the conviction of a couple in Bridgend for the murder of a child who had been taken off the "at risk" register, there have been calls for an independent review of social work as it affects children. Welsh Liberal Democrats support Prof. Donald Forrester and the British Association of Social Workers Cymru in their identification of a need for such a review, which has never been carried out in Wales, alone among the home countries.
Tuesday, April 26, 2022
217 police stations and counters across England have closed since 2015, shocking new figures uncovered by the Liberal Democrats have revealed.
It's the equivalent of over one police station closing every two weeks in the past seven years under the Conservatives.
The figures were obtained by the Liberal Democrats through FOI requests to every police force in England and Wales, with responses
London and the South East, in particular, have seen a staggering fall in the number of police stations. Thames Valley Police, responsible for policing in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, has closed the most locations, with 23 stations and 44 counters closed since 2015. This includes 41 closures in 2016 alone.
The Metropolitan Police is second in the country on stations closed, with 36 since 2015 – 31 of them in 2017.
Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey will tomorrow (Tuesday 26 April) visit the site of a closed police station in Oxfordshire to demand more investment in community policing.
Across England and Wales a total of 217 police stations and counters have been closed in the last seven years, with an average of 31 closures a year since 2015 – more than one per fortnight.
Ahead of the local elections this May, the Liberal Democrats are urging a return to community policing, with a three-point plan to crack down on crime and anti-social behaviour and reverse years of Conservative neglect:
Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey MP said:
“Shuttered police stations have become a symbol of the Conservatives’ failure on crime. Too many people feel unsafe on their own streets, and too many criminals are getting away with it.
“The Liberal Democrats are calling for a return to proper community policing, where officers are visible, trusted and focused on cutting crime.
“This May people will have a chance to send Boris Johnson’s Conservatives a message. A vote for the Liberal Democrats is a vote for more investment in our police and youth services to help make our communities safer.”
Sunday, April 24, 2022
Responding to the Prime Minister's press conference in New Delhi, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Layla Moran MP said:
“At this dark moment, we must make clear to all our allies that you cannot be neutral in the face of the war crimes being meted out against Ukrainians by Putin’s forces. This must be a matter of principle for the UK - sadly, Johnson seems so desperate for a bargain basement trade deal that he is keeping quiet.
Friday, April 22, 2022
Wednesday, April 20, 2022
Winner of the North Shropshire by-election, Helen Morgan MP, has written to Tory MPs warning them to learn their lessons from previous sleaze scandals.
MPs will vote tomorrow on whether to refer the Prime Minister for investigation by the Committee of Privileges following his repeated lies on partygate. Helen Morgan MP has written to 50 Blue Wall Tory MPs with slim majorities over the Liberal Democrats who are most vulnerable to a public backlash over their support for Boris Johnson.
Helen gained Owen Paterson's constituency by overturning a massive Conservative majority with a 34% swing amid news headlines of Conservative sleaze and scandal.
In a letter to Blue Wall Tory MPs, Liberal Democrat MP for North Shropshire Helen Morgan says:
Tuesday, April 19, 2022
Responding to Minister of State for Security Brandon Lewis' comments this morning comparing Boris Johnson breaking his own lockdown rules with previous ministers receiving parking tickets or speeding fines, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said:
Friday, April 15, 2022
Responding to Boris Johnson's plan to send asylum seekers to Rwanda, after Refugee Minister Lord Harrington ruled out such a move just last week, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Alistair Carmichael MP said:
"The Prime Minister and Home Secretary announcing a refugees policy that the Refugees Minister doesn't even know about shows the total dysfunction at the heart of the Home Office.
"If the Home Office can't even manage a press release properly, how on earth will they manage this new offshoring system?"
Thursday, April 14, 2022
Wednesday, April 13, 2022
Responding to inflation reaching 7% this morning, Leader of the Liberal Democrats Ed Davey said:
"Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak are too busy trying to save their own jobs rather than saving pensioners and families from spiralling prices.
Tuesday, April 12, 2022
Responding to today's ONS stats which show that UK wage growth has failed to keep pace with the rising cost of living, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Christine Jardine MP said:
“Today’s figures confirm the Conservative cost of living nightmare facing millions of UK families.
Responding to the news that UK GDP grew by a mere 0.1% in February, following 0.8% growth in January, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Christine Jardine MP said:
"These figures show the economy is being hit hard as the cost of living crisis bites.
“Instead of putting all his energy into protecting people and growing the economy, the Chancellor is instead in a fight for his political livelihood after this weeks scandalous revelations.
"Hard-pressed families are facing no end of hardship with soaring energy bills and unfair tax hikes and Ministers are sitting on their hands as both people and the economy suffer.”
Sunday, April 10, 2022
The Liberal Democrats have drawn up draft legislation to force the Chancellor and any other government ministers to reveal whether they or their spouses claim non-domiciled status or have holdings in overseas tax havens.
Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Christine Jardine MP has drafted the Ministerial Tax Residency Status Bill and will present it to the House of Commons once Parliament has returned from Easter recess.
It was recently revealed that Rishi Sunak was listed as a beneficiary of tax haven trusts set up in the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands and held by his wife Akshata Murthy – just days after it emerged she was using her non-domiciled status to avoid paying taxes in the UK.
Under the terms of the Liberal Democrat Bill, Rishi Sunak and any other government minister would be required to disclose whether any member of their household claims non-domiciled status for tax purposes, what overseas jurisdictions they pay tax in and if they are listed as the beneficiaries of trusts held abroad including in tax havens.
Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Christine Jardine said:
“Rishi Sunak’s continued refusal to answer basic questions about his family’s tax arrangements simply won’t wash. It shows he is completely out of touch with people struggling to pay their bills.
“The public deserve to know what other steps the Chancellor’s household may have taken to reduce their own tax bill while he hammers families around the country with unfair tax hikes.
“We have a draft law ready and waiting for when Parliament returns, to force Sunak and other ministers to reveal if their households are not paying their fair share by using tax havens."
Saturday, April 09, 2022
Responding to the statement from Rishi Sunak's wife Akshata Murty announcing she will now start paying UK tax on her overseas income, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Christine Jardine MP said:
"This shows that Rishi Sunak's wife could have paid her fair share of taxes in this country all along, despite his initial claims.
"Doing something just because you've been found out isn't good enough.
"Sunak's household now needs to backdate these taxes in full.
“Perhaps then the Chancellor will feel he can afford proper help for families struggling with soaring energy bills."
Friday, April 08, 2022
Following the atrocities uncovered in Bucha and Irpin, Liberal Democrats are today calling for Russian military units involved to be proscribed by the UK Government.
In his address to the House of Commons in March 2022, President Zelensky asked Parliament to, “please recognise [Russia] as a terrorist state”.
The Liberal Democrats are proposing the use of proscription orders as part of a renewed package of measures in response to the atrocities being committed by Russian forces in Ukraine.
The proposed measures include the expulsion of Russian diplomats based in Britain; and for the UK to lead calls at the ICC to issue an arrest warrant for Putin.
The use of proscription orders would designate Russian military units and mercenary groups, including the Wagner Group, as terrorist organisations.
Layla Moran MP, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs spokesperson commented:
“In light of the atrocities in Bucha, we cannot offer empty words while Putin and his soldiers continue to butcher innocent Ukrainian civilians.
“Last month, President Zelensky called on Parliament to recognise Russia as a terrorist state. It is clear beyond all doubt that Russian mercenaries and military units are waging a war of terror on the Ukrainian people.
“By proscribing these groups, they will be branded as terrorist organisations. This will make anyone engaging with them, anywhere in the world, in violation of UK law - putting pressure on those who have dealings with Putin’s mercenaries to pick a side.
“We must also work with our international partners to ramp up the pressure on Putin. That means following our allies and expelling Russian diplomats - and treating Putin as the international criminal he is by leading calls for the ICC to issue an international arrest warrant.”
Thursday, April 07, 2022
Responding to the news that the government-funded Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC) has been sold to the US firm Catalent, Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Daisy Cooper MP said:
"Selling this vital infrastructure is a ridiculously short-sighted move that risks leaving us less prepared for the next pandemic. Vaccines can take decades to develop and selling this facility shows this Conservative Government’s lack of long-term planning.
“This facility was purpose built with more than £200m worth of taxpayers’ money to produce vaccines. With this Government wasting eye-watering amounts of public money and writing off money spent fraudulently, the Tories must come clean on how much this facility has been sold for.
“The Prime Minister himself underlined how important this centre would be to protect against Covid and future pandemics. The public has a right to know why he has now changed his mind.
“The Government must be totally transparent about why this facility is being sold, for how much, and whether this will impact the UK’s resilience in the face of possible future pandemics.”
Responding to the new wave of UK sanctions against Russia, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Layla Moran MP said:
"Putin and his armies are butchering innocent Ukrainians. These sanctions were urgently needed - but while Ukrainians are massacred, we cannot stop there.
"It’s time to treat Putin’s armies and mercenaries as the terrorists they are, using UK proscription orders. We should be leading calls for the ICC to issue an international arrest warrant for Putin.
"In the UK, too many of Putin’s cronies are still getting away with it. The Conservative Government has sat on the golden visas review for over four years. They slam the door in Ukrainian refugees’ faces, yet won’t tell us how many Kremlin-linked oligarchs they rolled out the red carpet for.
"The review must be published - and any oligarchs who have been flagged as a national security risk should be kicked out of the UK."
Wednesday, April 06, 2022
Tuesday, April 05, 2022
Responding to reports that over 80 LGBT and HIV organisations have pulled out of the government’s planned international LGBT conference due to their u-turn on banning trans conversion therapy, Liberal Democrat Equalities Spokesperson Wera Hobhouse MP said:
“The UK should be leading the world on LGBT+ equality, but Number 10’s chaotic U-turns are shredding our country’s reputation.
“The global LGBT+ conference in London this summer should be a huge opportunity to tackle discrimination and inequality around the world. It is far too important for the Government to squander like this.
“By breaking their promise to ban conversion therapy completely, the Conservatives are letting down the whole LGBT+ community. They need to ban conversion therapy in full - as they pledged to."
“Yet again, the Conservatives have shown they care more about lining the pockets of the super rich than supporting a great public institution.
“Even Margaret Thatcher understood the huge power of Channel 4 as a force for creativity and innovation that belonged to all of us without costing taxpayers a penny.
“Occasionally, we as a country manage to magic up a world-renowned gem into being and Channel 4 is a perfect example. And yet this Government seems hellbent on trashing this uniquely British legacy and undermining jobs and investment in the creative sector.
“The Liberal Democrats will oppose these dangerous plans in Parliament and stand up for the quality and independence of British broadcasting.”
Monday, April 04, 2022
Responding to government minister Simon Hart's comments this morning that "the world has moved on" from partygate, Liberal Democrat Christine Jardine MP said:
"These comments are an insult to every family that suffered in lockdown while Downing Street partied.
"Boris Johnson's Conservatives have got something else coming if they think the public has moved on from this shameful scandal.
"Boris Johnson broke the rules he asked us all to obey then repeatedly lied about it. Conservative MPs must rediscover their moral compass and get rid of him."