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Brighton and Hove Liberal Democrats

    • Vince Cable
      Article: Jun 27, 2018

      "At the centre of the last budget was a pledge to build 300,000 UK houses a year to address the 'housing crisis'.

      We were taken back to the days when a post-war Conservative Government, under Churchill, was elected with this level of ambition, and more than succeeded.

      Or to the interwar National Government when, under the much-maligned Neville Chamberlain, when there was a similar level of ambition and achievement in the aftermath of, and as an antidote to, the Great Crash.

    • Pro-EU Groups Outside Brighton Station 2018
      Article: Jun 24, 2018
      By Carrie Hynds

      Thank you to everyone who supported the People's Vote march in London on Saturday!

      A crowd of pro-EU residents from all parties and none met at Brighton station to travel together to the march, including Labour MP Peter Kyle and Green MP Caroline Lucas, reflecting the emerging cross-party consensus of the need for a vote on the final Brexit deal.

    • NHS Logo
      Article: Jun 19, 2018

      The Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to detail exactly how they plan on funding the £20 billion NHS cash injection. Responding to May's speech, former Liberal Democrat Health Minister Norman Lamb said:

      "The Government has missed a golden opportunity to work with other parties to come up with a transparent and properly-funded plan for the NHS and social care. Instead, they have shamelessly misled the public with the myth of a 'Brexit Dividend', which simply doesn't exist.

      "The Tories' promise of a £20 billion cash injection rings hollow with no clarity as to where the money will come from. The IFS and the King's Fund have also said that it won't be enough to deliver a modern NHS that treats people with mental and physical ill health equally.

      "In her speech May called for a more efficient NHS, but this will be impossible to achieve when none of the new funding is going towards social care, public health or prevention.

      "This is not the long-term plan that the NHS and social care need. To achieve this, the Government must accept the need to work with others to find a solution which offers sustainable funding.

      The Lib Dems are the only party putting forward an immediate 1p increase in income tax - which would raise an additional £6bn a year."

    • David Nicholas Wilkinson holding B&H Lib Dems EU leaflet
      Article: Jun 17, 2018

      The Duke of York's Picturehouse is screening "Postcards from the 48%" at 8.30 pm on Monday 9th July. This is a film putting forward the facts and points of view of those who voted Remain in the EU referendum, and we really want to support it being shown in Brighton!

      David Nicholas Wilkinson, the director, will be doing a Q&A session afterwards. As you can see from the photo, he has previously shown support for our local Vote on the Facts campaign. We will ask permission from the cinema to hold up our banner and hand out leaflets ahead of the screening, so please come along from 7.30pm if you're available to help.

    • EU march
      Article: Jun 17, 2018

      On Saturday 23rd June, Brighton & Hove Liberal Democrats will join Brighton & Hove for EU, the Green Party and pro-EU Sussex groups in front of Brighton railway station at 9.20 am for a photo opportunity before joining the biggest demonstration that there has been for years. The March for a People's Vote starts at 12 noon in Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ER. See our EU Campaign page for full details.

    • The flags of EU countries flying.
      Article: Jun 16, 2018
      By Catherine Bearder

      Time is getting very tight, but it is still possible to stop Brexit. As Europe waits for real answers on the hundreds of issues to be sorted, Mrs May is wasting time trying unite her quarrelsome cabinet, not putting the fate of our country first.

      To make matters worse Jeremy Corbyn's Labour party is still cowering behind the sofa rather than being a real opposition.

    • Swinson conference
      Article: Jun 12, 2018
      By Jo Swinson MP in The New European

      JO SWINSON guides you through seven steps you can take to help fight Brexit.

      It's easy to wax lyrical about everything that is going wrong with Brexit. The Conservatives are stumbling their way through the negotiations and the Labour leadership is standing idly by.

      In the meantime, the rest of us are left to ponder doomsday scenarios where we run out of food, medicine and petrol.

    • Owen Smith backs Amd 19a
      Article: Jun 8, 2018
      By Bryan Lewis

      Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake has tabled an amendment - 19a - to the EU Withdrawal Bill that to ensure that the people, not politicians, get the final say on the Brexit deal and the opportunity to exit from Brexit.

      Labour MP Owen Smith, Plaid Cymru MP Jonathan Edwards and Green MP Caroline Lucas are among the MPs backing the Lib Dems' amendment.

    • Housebuilding
      Article: Jun 5, 2018
      By Helen Flynn in Liberal Democrat Voice

      You can tell things must be getting really bad when even the Conservatives are concerned about the shortfall of affordable houses. Survation recently polled 121 senior Conservative councillors, on behalf of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation ahead of the government's publication of its social housing green paper, expected in the next few months. The poll found 71% were concerned that the £2bn Government set aside for affordable housing in the Autumn Budget will be insufficient to meet the needs of their constituents.

    • Article: May 30, 2018
      By Nick Clegg in i News

      In politics, if you want to understand your enemies listen hard to their tone. The tone of your opponents normally tells you a lot more about what they're really thinking than what they say. And the tone of the Brexiteers is increasingly brittle, angry and panicky.

      It isn't just the - now frequent - demented headlines on the front page of Paul Dacre's Daily Mail ("traitors", "saboteurs", "enemies of the people"). It isn't just the - now frequent - self-absorbed rants from Dominic Cummings, the political apparatchik who helped to run the Brexit campaign.

    • Mark Pack
      Article: May 22, 2018
      By Mark Pack Author, 101 Ways To Win An Election

      Peering into the details and the patterns behind the Liberal Democrat performance in this May's local elections, one intriguing political opportunity presents itself. The party did best in shire district elections up against the Conservatives. There appear to be rich pickings for the party from Remain voters in such areas who are unimpressed by Brexit and unimpressed by the government's wider record.

    • Colourful houses in Kemptown, Brighton.
      Article: May 14, 2018

      If you are renting in Brighton & Hove (or anywhere else) and you want to know more about what rights and obligations you have as a tenant, visit our new Housing Rights page. Local member Beatrice Bass summarised the basic framework of the landlord and tenant law in England and Wales for you. You will find information on what kind of tenancy agreement you have, what repairs your landlord is obliged to do, how to get your deposit back and other useful tips and links. Visit the page here.

    • Palace of Westminster.
      Article: May 10, 2018

      Last night Theresa May suffered yet another series of damning defeats in the Lords, exposing the ever-increasing anger at her administration's undemocratic, destructive approach to Brexit.

      So far the government has been defeated a total of 14 times, with the Lords rejecting the Brexit deadline and exit date, securing a meaningful vote in the Commons, and quashing attempts to hand ministers 'blank cheque' powers.

    • Palace of Westminster.
      Article: May 9, 2018

      The Government have received their eleventh, twelfth and thirteenth defeats in the House of Lords during the Report stage of the EU Withdrawal Bill.

      A vote on an amendment to ensure our future interaction with EU law and agencies was passed by a cross-bench majority of 298 to 227

      A further vote on an amendment to remove the exit date from the bill passed by a cross-bench majority of 311 to 233.

    • Article: May 4, 2018

      On Thursday, large chunks of England went to the polls in the local elections, and this time next year it'll be Brighton & Hove's turn.

      We've had our best local election result in more than FIFTEEN years.

      We held every single Council and Mayoralty we were defending including, Eastleigh, South Lakeland, Sutton, Cheltenham and Watford.

    • Ed Davey (Chris McAndrew [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons)
      Article: Apr 27, 2018
      By Edward Davey in Politics

      The Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Home Affairs, Sir Ed Davey, warns the Government that 'a little noticed clause in the Data Protection Bill' could cause a new scandal even larger than Windrush.

      The Windrush scandal has shone a light on just how horrific Theresa May's "hostile environment" immigration policy has become. And it's about to get worse. Under legislation before Parliament, the Conservatives have cooked up a plan that could cause a new scandal, larger in scale than Windrush.

    • Palace of Westminster.
      Article: Apr 24, 2018

      In the face of further defeats on the EU (Withdrawal) Bill, and following further pressure from Peers across the House of Lords, the government has brought forward amendments to ensure that the UK still has the ability to refer to and apply EU guidance for legal matters in our courts going forwards.

    • Vince Cable in Twickenham
      Article: Apr 20, 2018

      He criticised the effective monopolies enjoyed by the likes of Google, Facebook, and Amazon - comparing their market dominance to that of big oil companies in the past - and suggested ways they could be broken up.

      "Data is the new oil. Data is the raw material which drives these firms and it is control of data which gives them an advantage over competitors. These companies have acquired their pivotal position by providing a service or platform through which data can be extracted, collected and used.

      Just as Standard Oil once cornered 85% of the refined oil market, today Google drives 89% of internet search, 95% of young adults on the internet use a Facebook product, Amazon accounts for 75% of E-book sales, while Google and Apple combined provide 99% of mobile operating systems.

      National government and, even more so, supranational bodies like the EU can and should look to break up enterprises where size is detrimental to the economic well-being of the country, its citizens and its capacity for innovation.

      There is a case for splitting Amazon into three separate businesses - one offering cloud computing, one acting as a general retailer and one offering a third-party marketplace. Other examples would be Facebook being forced to divest itself of Instagram and WhatsApp as a condition for operating in the EU, creating two new social media networks. Divesting Google of YouTube would be another.

      What is striking that the most effective competition authority in the capitalist world - the European Commission - is probably the only body with the clout to take these decisions. The UK could quite obviously never do it alone.

      Britain commits an act of serious self-harm by doggedly setting itself apart from the power of shared sovereignty with our neighbours.

    • Theresa May.
      Article: Apr 18, 2018

      The Windrush scandal has exposed the brutality of the Home Office and the Conservatives more clearly than a multitude of other immigration and asylum scandals.

      The reason?

      The Windrush Generation are British citizens. People who've lived here for decades - working, raising families, part of Britain.

      Even the Daily Mail has been forced to back their case.

    • Vince Cable
      Article: Apr 12, 2018

      I am certain that many Britons are as appalled as I am about the horrific scenes coming out of Syria.

      The use of chemical weapons is barbaric. It is a crime against humanity and it is a clear violation of international law.

      The Liberal Democrats are an internationalist, outward-looking party - and part of that is being willing to play our part in upholding international law.

    • Mark Pack
      Article: Apr 11, 2018
      By Mark Pack Author, 101 Ways To Win An Election in Liberal Democrat Newswire
      The first Thursday in May sees a big round of local elections across England (along with a few extra by-elections scheduled for that day). Most of the seats up for election were last fought four years ago, which means there will be rich pickings for anyone wanting to talk up or talk down any party. That's because you can legitimately argue over whether the best comparisons are with last year (the last big round of locals) or with four years ago (the last time most of these seats were fought). Add to that the massive decline in Ukip over the last four years, giving scope for all parties to hope to gain votes or seats from them, and it's even possible every major party will be able to talk about being a winner.

      What will count as success for the Liberal Democrats? One benchmark is votes. Here we can make comparisons across the years because each year an 'equivalent national vote share' is calculated for each party. This takes the actual vote totals from each year and adjusts them to take into account the differences in seats fought so that you get figures which can be compared across the years. In fact, two different teams do this - Thrasher and Rallings and the BBC. Both tell a similar picture although their exact numbers for each party often vary a little.

      The story of local elections during the coalition years (2011-15 inclusive) was of low and falling Lib Dem vote shares: 16% falling to 10%, with an average of 13% for Thrasher and Rallings (16% to 11%, 14% average for BBC). 2016 saw a small recovery - back up to 14% (15% BBC) - with a bigger recovery in 2017, taking the party up to 18% (also 18% BBC). In all the other electoral headlines last year, the fact and size of that Lib Dem vote share recovery were mostly missed (unless, ahem, you were a Lib Dem Newswire reader).

      So what counts for success in 2018?
      • Under 13% (under 14% BBC): awful - back down to coalition years vote shares, and worse even than the average in those years.
      • 13%-18% (14-18% BBC) would be disappointing as that would mean slipping back on last year yet a result in this range would still be up on the coalition years to varying degrees. The Lib Dem vote share in 2014, it is worth noting, was 11% (13% BBC) so it could slip on last year and still be up on four years ago. That would have to count as disappointing - a bullet dodged, perhaps, and maybe only mildly disappointing depending on the figures. But you can't call vote share going down on last year great.
      • 19% and 22% (19-23% BBC) would be good - vote share up again although not yet back to pre-coalition levels.
      • Over 22% (over 23% BBC) would be amazing - not only a big increase in the Lib Dem vote but also back up to where the party was at a couple of times in the pre-coalition Parliament.
      When it comes to seats, the starting point is to bear in mind that the party has gained seats only once in the last nine years (stretching back to include pre-coalition contests too, note - the problem with the party's slipping strength pre-dates coalition). Simply being up this year would be a good break in that trend.

      If the party is down and it is a two digit fall, then when you factor in by-election gains and the gains in May 2016 it'll mean that overall the party has been flat since coalition. Worse than that and it starts to get into much more troubling territory for the party.

      Thinking about the other parties, the factor that most strikes me is one people haven't been mentioning. Since 2014 there has been a swing from Labour to the Conservatives (yes, away from Labour and to the Conservatives) in the national polls. The Conservative boost at the expense of Ukip* has more than outweighed the Corbyn revival of last spring for Labour. For example, in March 2014 Labour was averaging a four-point lead over the Conservatives. In March this year, it was a half-point Conservative lead.

      So could the Conservatives pull off seat gains from Labour, helped too by the fact that Labour hasn't actually managed to close the turnout gap on the Conservatives? Could the headlines be about Conservative triumph? It seems unlikely, especially given all the signs of serious Conservative meltdown in London and the shortage of Ukip seats for the Conservatives to win compared with their likely loses in some areas. And yet... at the very least, expect plenty of variation in the pattern of results around the country.

      In particular, watch out for how the Conservatives fare against the Liberal Democrats across southern England including - though not only - in heavily Remain voting areas. This has been particularly fruitful territory for Lib Dem progress in council by-elections.

      Yet for all the very real progress in by-elections - as one Conservative Cabinet minister told BuzzFeed, "They're definitely doing better than we've seen for a while" - as last year showed, promise in council by-elections is no guarantee of progress in the May contests. To help make that promise real, you can of course donate to the Lib Dems.

      * Yes, the churn within the figures makes it rather more complicated than that. The overall pattern though is Conservatives up, Ukip down.
    • Article: Apr 9, 2018
      By Paul Chandler

      There are rumours in the press of a new 'centre' party being formed by a collection of well-meaning people prepared to bankroll the party to the tune of £50m. Inevitably parallels are drawn with Emmanuel Macron and 'En Marche' in France.

      LibDems get understandably worked up about this kind of talk. 'There is already a perfectly good centre party', we say, 'it already exists, and it's called The Liberal Democrats!'

    • Bill Police Station Jan 2018
      Article: Apr 9, 2018

      The Home Secretary has denied cuts to police funding are to blame for a rise in crime as the latest violence in London pushes the murder rate to over 50 for the year so far.

      Liberal Democrats have consistently argued for a broad range of measures, with a much greater focus on crime prevention and investment in communities and young people.

    • Lord Chris Fox
      Article: Apr 4, 2018

      Join us on Tuesday 17th April for our first Lib Dem Business in Brighton & Hove event with Chris Fox - Lib Dem Peer and the party's spokesperson on Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

      The event will take place at the Brighthelm Centre, minutes from Brighton station from 5.30pm-8.30pm, with Chris speaking at 6pm.

    • Belfast City Hall
      Article: Mar 30, 2018
      By Carrie Hynds

      Last week, I watched a documentary about the Funeral Murders that took place in Belfast 30 years ago. It was a well-made piece of film but incredibly difficult to watch.

      I grew up in Northern Ireland in the 1990s, and my earliest memories are marked by The Troubles. Bomb scares were common, empty vehicles with their engines running were cause for alarm, and at the army checkpoints I would be asked to get off my booster seat so that a man with a rifle could check whether it had been hollowed out to conceal weapons or drugs. You arrived at the airport two and a half hours ahead of your flight because each item of luggage would be individually unpacked and searched. You were constantly aware of the possibility of being in the wrong place in the wrong time, and it was tiring, tiring, tiring.