Responding to the reports that the Government are set to announce it will be compulsory for voters to show identification at the next election, Liberal Democrat shadow minister for the Cabinet Office, Tom Brake said:
“The move by the Government to make voter ID compulsory is a thinly-veiled attempt to rig the results of future elections. We know from the pilot back in 2018 that voter fraud was inconsequential, whilst what the pilot did do was turn away a disproportionate number of vulnerable voters.
"Boris Johnson is clearly taking a leaf out of Trump's playbook by using false claims about voter fraud to suppress turnout.
“The trial was deemed a waste of time and the public’s money, and this roll-out will be no different. The Conservative Government have already showed disdain for our democracy and this move is simply further confirmation of that.
“Rather than electioneering by making it harder to vote, the Conservative Government should be focusing on ways to encourage democratic participation, such as through extending voting rights to 16 year olds.”
The Liberal Democrats have called on the Conservative Government to ban all arm sales to Turkey.
Following the human rights violations in Syria, Chuka Umunna, the Liberal Democrat Shadow Foreign Secretary, said:
“It is clear that there have been human rights violations against the Kurdish people in Syria. It is only right that the UK now bans any export of arms that could be used by Turkey in Syria.
“It has long been Liberal Democrat policy to oppose arm sales to those who commit human rights violations and the situation in Syria is no different. The Conservative government must join our European allies in suspending sales immediately. The UK cannot be complicit in Donald Trump’s betrayal of the Kurdish people.
“The Tory government must also do all they can to help stabilise the region and provide humanitarian assistance to those in need. Boris Johnson must urge President Trump to rethink his withdrawal from the region. The UK government has a responsibility to do all it can to stop any further atrocities.”
This week, your London Lib Dem MEPs were listening to heartbreaking stories from EU citizens living in the UK and Brits living elsewhere in the EU who feel abandoned by their own government at the same time as Boris Johnson presented yet more disastrous, unworkable Tory Brexit proposals. We also heard how the rights and protections migrants and refugees currently enjoy as a result of our EU membership are under threat.
Liberal London will not stand back and watch these fundamental human rights being rolled back. We will keep fighting, every day, whether that is by lobbying influencers in Brussels or campaigning on the streets of London, to obtain an extension of the Article 50 process, in order to first of all avoid no deal and ultimately Stop Brexit altogether.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) have reported this week that a no-deal Brexit could push the UK debt to the highest levels since the 1960s.
This new analysis is a body blow to Boris Johnson’s election spending plans - as it shows the cost of Brexit is much higher than thought. Brexit would mortgage our children’s future, plunging Britain into the red and threatening years of new austerity.
There is simply no Brexit that is good for the economy. Any deal stitched together by Johnson would condemn the UK to economic slowdown. Whilst Labour’s Brexit confusion presents no hope, the Liberal Democrats will stop Brexit and give Britain a Remain boost.
You can read the full report here (IFS Green Budget 2019), it makes gloomy reading.
The Liberal Democrats have warned that the Government is failing to guarantee the rights of all 3.6 million EU citizens in the UK, as new official figures show that fewer than 1 million people had been given Settled Status by the end of September.
The latest EU Settlement Scheme Statistics, published today by the Home Office, show that 929,600 people had been granted Settled Status by the end of September 2019 – meaning 2.7 million EU citizens do not have Settled Status. 586,700 applicants have been given Pre-Settled Status, which only gives them Limited Leave to Remain in the UK for five years.
The Liberal Democrats also raised concerns over the number of applicants receiving neither Settled or Pre-Settled Status. Today’s figures show 335,700 people are still waiting for a decision, with 1,860,200 applications received but only 1,524,500 concluded. They also show 8,000 “other outcomes” (applications that were withdrawn, deemed invalid, or where the applicant was deemed ineligible) in the first six months of the scheme.