Jo's speech in Battersea

November 14, 2019 10:01 AM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

We don't know about you but we had a wild Saturday night!

Our leader Jo Swinson kicked off her election tour of the UK with a supporter's rally in Battersea. We're taking the fight across the country - starting last week with our plan for a brighter future.

Jo led by paying tribute to the many young people in the room and pledged to fight to leave behind a better world:

Today is all about you.

You are the reason why our party is working so hard to win this election.

Why we have a plan for building a brighter future.

Where every single one of you here and around the country can thrive.

She then criticised Labour and the Conservatives, two old Brexit parties collaborating to drag us out the EU:

Our country deserves better than what is on offer by the two tired old parties, led by men who want to rehash ideas from the past - whether it's the 1870s or the 1970s.

Journalists keep asking me who I prefer out of Jeremy Corbyn or Boris Johnson.

It's like they think I'm some kind of judge on X-Factor. That's not my job, so the answer will always be neither of them.

And that's because both of them would be bad for our country.

When I look at what is on offer from Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn, I know that I could do a better job as Prime Minister than either of them.

She turned her fire to Johnson's nurse tax:

Boris Johnson this week announced a new policy that would charge people from other EU countries a fee for coming to work in our NHS. Think about that.

EU workers are essential to our NHS. We should be thanking them for working in our NHS, not charging them extra for the privilege.

This tax on nurses is a cruel, heartless and frankly stupid policy. It demonises our neighbours, undermines our NHS and makes a mockery of Boris Johnson's claim that he wants to build a global Britain.

Jo attacked Corbyn's complacency on Brexit and anti-semitism:

The Labour party are deluded if they think that they can deliver Brexit and still fulfil their promise to protect the NHS.

The best way to protect our NHS is to stay in the European Union - with a strong economy and access to the talent we need.

Yet Jeremy Corbyn still won't tell you whether he'd support leave or remain. The biggest issue of the day, and he cannot pick a side.

Just today we heard how a shadow cabinet member adapted a song with anti-Semitic slur.

And it's stories like that that led to the Jewish Chronicle this week warning the British public against voting for Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party.

So when I look at what is on offer from Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn, I know that I could do a better job as Prime Minister than either of them.

We're on the march - and Jo paid tribute to this:

We've had our best-ever local elections.

And for the first time in a hundred years we've beaten both Labour and the Conservatives in a national election.

We had MPs join us from both sides of Parliament, ready to build something new and exciting.

Liberal Democrats, there are no limits to my ambition for what we can achieve together.

Jo shared some of her plans for our country's future:

Leaving the European Union is not the answer to the problems we face.

Our country has a choice to make.

We can choose to be open and generous, instead of closed and selfish.

We can choose to work with our closest allies, instead of standing alone in the world.

We can choose to nurture the bonds in our family of nations, instead of trying to tear them apart.

At this general election, people can choose the Liberal Democrats.

Leaving the European Union is not the answer to the problems we face.

It won't help the single parent struggling to pay for school uniforms. Or the child who needs extra help at school. And it won't save our planet.

That's why a majority Liberal Democrat government will revoke article 50 on day one.

She spoke about the importance of affordable childcare:

There are no limits to my ambition for what we can achieve together.

A Liberal Democrat government will provide working parents with free, high-quality childcare from when their child is 9 months old until their first day at school.

We will fund 35 free hours a week, 48 weeks a year for every child aged two till four and children with parents who are back in work from 9 months.

And this isn't just about making lives easier for parents.

Liberal Democrats, our politics is in a state of flux.

And this general election could lead to seismic change out of which a new and different politics can emerge.

One based on hope, not fear.

On where we work with our closest allies to save our planet for future generations.

One where we value every individual and are ambitious for what they can achieve, no matter who they are, the colour of their skin, which god they pray to or none, or who they love.

At this General Election, the choice is clear.

Vote for the party that wants to Stop Brexit.

The party that has the plan for a brighter future. Vote Liberal Democrat.