Following a thorough, motivating zoom meeting with Lord Newby, our Leader in the Lords, on March 15, the fight against the anti-democratic Elections Bill is still very much on!
This week, the Lords move to voting on the bill. - and there are two actions we should take:
Lord Newby has asked us to:
- between the key dates of April 4-7, write to as many of these peers as possible. This targetted list consists of cross bench and independent peers; all selected by our Lords team as the priority ones to lobby.
Our online Spring Conference saw two well-attended, information-filled fringe meetings.
On Saturday March 12, LDER President Wendy Chamberlain MP hosted "Linking PR to what really matters," with panellists Wera Hobhouse MP, London Assembly member Hina Bokhari and two of our target seat PPCs, Josh Babarinde (Eastbourne) and Monica Harding (Esher and Walton). A recording will be available shortly, and we will contact you with details when it's ready to view.
Reminder! Join Lord Newby for an Elections Bill update tomorrow
The Government's Elections Bill threatens to undermine the independence of the Electoral Commission; to make it harder to vote through the introduction of voter ID; and to take us backwards not forwards when it comes to PR.
With the Bill currently in its Committee stage in the Lords, our Parliamentary Party is working hard to stop it.
Reforming the UK's electoral system: the view from Labour… and more at Conference!
Spring Conference kicks off this afternoon and we're looking forward to a rich lineup of events focused on political and constitutional reform.
In advance of the fringe meetingThe Route to Proportional RepresentationLaura Parker (Labour for a New Democracy) has written for Lib Dem Voice -"Reforming the UK's electoral system: the view from Labour". To hear more from Laura, join us - alongside our friends from Unlock Democracy - for Sunday's event.
Sleaze and standards: More Conference events with LDER President Wendy Chamberlain MP
In recent months there have been a slew of sleaze stories coming out of Government but no resolve by those in power to do anything about it. This won't be the end, with many more stories expected especially in relation to the VIP PPE lane.
Participate in the debate! Policy motion on political reform to tackle sleaze
On Friday 11th March at 15:40 - 16:20 in the main auditorium, Conference will vote on a motion tabled by Wendy Chamberlain MP to bring in the needed political reform to tackle sleaze in politics.
The motion calls for key reforms including:
a public inquiry including full disclosure of documents
codifying the Ministerial Code with governance independent from the Prime Minister
introducing a range of sanctions for those who breach the Code
giving MPs more control over House business to give them more power to hold the Government to account.
Applications to speak in the debate are now open. You can submit your speaker card from now until 16:00 on Thursday 10th March here.
Ask a question of our spokespeople! Standards in public life
On Sunday 13th March from 16:35 - 17:40on the fringe of Spring Conference Wendy Chamberlain MP and the Rt. Hon. Lord William Wallace of Saltaire will discuss and take questions about the extremely important and topical issue of standards in public life.
Following the Owen Paterson affair, Wendy successfully hosted the Commons debate on Standards in Public Life. We've now had the partygate scandal and more examples of the disdain this government has for truth and accuracy.
This wide-reaching conversation will answer your questions about why it is so hard to get the Government to tell the truth, the rules MPs must follow and how they could be made better, and what needs to be done for politicians and politics to be trusted.
To join these events you must be registered for Conference. There is still time to sign up here.
Your Spring Conference diary
There are a number of events that may be of interest to you at Spring Conference. Mark your Conference diary!
Friday 11th March, 15:40 - 16:20 F7. Political Reform to Tackle Sleaze (auditorium)
Saturday 12th March, 16:35 - 17:40 Linking PR to Real Life Outcomes (LDER fringe)
Sunday 13th March, 13:00 - 14:25 The Route to Proportional Representation (Unlock Democracy and LDER fringe)
Sunday 13th March, 16:35 - 17:40 Standards in Public Life - Spokesperson Q&A with Wendy Chamberlain MP and Lord Wallace of Saltaire (fringe)
You can find details of these events and other activity at Conference in the agenda and directory.
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