LEADING, WINNING AND WHAT'S COMING UP
By LDER executive
LEADING THE WAY
Ed on the importance of electoral reform
November saw party leader Ed Davey make two public speeches where he highlighted the crucial role of House of Commons voting reform in fixing the UK's broken politics.
In his November 6 Leader's Speech (broadcast live on news media including Sky News), Ed had this to say:
'If there's one thing the last year has shown us, it's that our political system is not fit for purpose. First Past the Post distorts democracy. It denies voters a real choice. It incentivises political parties to do exactly what the Conservatives do now: Focus on a small number of voters. In a small number of marginal seats. Ignoring everyone else. And so taking millions of people for granted. We have to stop that.
'In the end, for us, as liberals, it comes down to power. And a proportional electoral system would give every voter equal power. And with fair votes, everyone could make their voices heard. Everyone's vote would have real power.'
And on November 30th, at an Institute of Public Policy and Research event - 'Why isn't our politics working and how can we fix it?' - he cited House of Commons electoral reform as the essential door-opener for the major changes - local government, Lords reform, devolution, standards and ethics in public life - we all know are needed. Ending safe seats will mean everyone's voices are heard. He emphasised the priority of Commons reform by saying that reforming the Lords without changing the Commons first would be like 'changing the tyres while the car's on fire!'
It's great to see the cause of electoral reform featuring so prominently - we all now have to plan and act on Ed's stated goal of -
'Making the next General Election the last to be fought under First Past The Post'WINNERS
Thanks to everyone who sent in their answers to our first 'Fair and Equal Votes Quiz'.
There were a total of 21 answers from the questions set - and congratulations go to Quiz Winner Brigid Gardner, who scored 18 correct answers.
And commendation to two worthy runners up - Sean Hagan and William Frass, each of whom scored an impressive 17 correct answers.
Want to find out how you got on? Here is the full quiz with questions, answers and points.
Look out for more quizzes in the future!
Make Votes Matter Equal Votes Awards
At the annual Equal Votes awards, Layla Moran MP was voted the 2022 Parliamentary Champion award winner!
This is for the member of the House of Commons or House of Lords who has done the most to campaign for a proportional voting system in the UK (excluding Labour, which has a separate award).
Congratulations to Layla for her great work.
WHAT'S COMING UP
Thank you to everyone who joined our November 1 AGM, which featured speeches and questions and answers with LDER President Wendy Chamberlain MP and Commons spokesperson on constitutional reform, Christine Jardine MP. The new LDER executive (see lder.org/About Us) is reviewing strategy and priorities for 2023/24 and we'll share the outcome with you all.
Young Liberals with Mark Pack and Wendy Chamberlain - January 17
Details to follow - but an early 'save the date' for this important LDER-hosted zoom session!
Spring Conference - March 17-19
For party members attending our in-person - finally! - York Conference, LDER will have a full programme of exhibition and fringe meetings. Look out for more information.
You can register for Conference here.
Labour's Cat Smith MP has submitted a Commons bill for PR. Second reading looks like being on Friday Jan 20th, 2023 - we'll try to track this and see what we can all best do to support it.
Make Votes Matter 'People's Lobby' - February 2023 (date being finalised). This is when constituents contact MPs and arrange to meet them all on the same day in Westminster to press the case for PR. More to come.
Subscriptions - online payment update
A big thank you to all our members, until now subscribing through either Nationwide or Stripe (both of whom closed their facility for us) whom we are having to ask to move to the 'go cardless' system we now use - https://lder.org/en/donate is the place to go.
And of course, if you do not already subscribe to LDER, you can do so for a minimum payment of £10 per year (£5 concessions). Thanks to everyone for your support.