18 March 2014

How About a Green v Lib Dem Debate Chris?

I’m sure Chris Davies MEP (Lib Dem) is unsurprised that Paul Nuttall MEP (UKIP) will not debate him over Europe. Given that during the last Euro campaign, I didn’t come across Paul Nuttall once during the hustings process, we probably won’t see him in this one either. The Liberal Democrats have been making great noises about being the “only” party that will fight for Britain in Europe (which I’ve pointed out is simply untrue) but the Greens will do that too, so no point us discussing that issue.

Given that Chris obviously had space in his diary, I’m offering to step in to debate some of the key issues of the campaign, and the major differences between the Green Party and the Liberal Democrats. We should live stream it and circulate around our networks. I propose we discuss the following:

- TTIP: the Liberal Democrats have set great stall in supporting the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and propose to attack the Green Party on this issue. The Greens think this is going to undermine the freedoms of governments and workers in Europe. Who is right?

- Fracking and nuclear: the Liberal Democrats are endorsing fracking and nuclear energy as part of the energy mix for our future. The Green Party want an end to privatised energy, a credible energy efficiency programme and a move to 100% renewable energy

- Trident: despite being faced by the biggest budget crisis in the UK’s history, the Liberal Democrats are now accepting a limited nuclear deterrent (Gordon Birtwhistle, NW Politics Show 16th March - but as yet not broadcast). The Green Party remain consistently against these immoral and unaffordable weapons.

- Women’s rights and sexual harassment: there are dinosaur like attitudes of mostly male politicians to very real harassment. Why have the Liberal Democrats failed so badly on this issue?

- The Gagging Bill: just why have the Liberal Democrats supported a bill that limits charities and NGOs from their active political campaigning?

- Caredata: why has a government that the “Liberal” Democrats forms proposing that your confidential patient data with your GP gets uploaded and sold off?

- Tuition fees: we know what happened here. The Greens propose that general taxation should pay for the next generation of graduates and that our society is better off if people don’t leave university saddled with debt

I won’t hold my breath on the response but I will say that we are competing with the Liberal Democrats and the BNP for the final seat in this region. If you want a liberal and green party elected to represent you in Europe, you need to look at what both parties stand for today in Britain.

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