A General Election is coming! When it is coming is less clear – it might be as soon as the end of November or sometime in late winter or early Spring. No-one is certain at the moment. Whenever it comes Liberal Democrats are ready for the campaign.
So what happened at conference . . .
There has been a great deal of media coverage on the conference decision to formally adopt Revoke Article 50 if we have a majority at the next GE.
This does not mean that Liberal Democrats will not continue to work with other parties to find compromise, nor does it mean the party no longer supports a People’s Vote – we do. Nor does it mean that we are ignoring the results of the last Referendum. What it does is to recognise that, in the current climate, we have to send a clear message to the electorate that there is a practical alternative to No Deal.
The party’s preferred choice remains a second referendum, but revocation would happen if the party won a majority. “Europe makes our United Kingdom stronger, but Brexit hurts our family of nations,” says party leader Jo Swinson. (You can read more on Jo's conference speech here).
Revocation of Article 50 is a a clear election manifesto position on which we stand and differentiates the Liberal Democrats from other major parties. It also offers voters, many of whom are sick and tired of Brexit, a significantly better alternative than No Deal.
Conference also focused on other critical issues including Climate Change and Social Fairness, both of which are of major importance to North Norfolk. As a result of proposals put forward by North Norfolk Lib Dems the National campaign team have added Housing to the current Social Fairness themes alongside Health, Social Care and Education.
The Local Government Association launched a Rural Strategy at the conference to which NNDC Council Leader Sarah Bütikofer contributed with an account of our recently completed sandscaping project at Bacton and Walcott. As the party of the countryside we are pleased to be associated with the new strategy.
Lib Dems also recognise the need for a specific Farming Policy, especially since there is a huge risk to many farms from a No Deal Brexit. North Norfolk PPC Karen Ward has offered to lead a small group of PPCs and policy colleagues to draft some high-level principles in order to develop this policy which will also link well with the North Norfolk climate change agenda.
Above: Karen Ward
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for North Norfolk