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Lib Dems set for big conference

September 12, 2008 5:49 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

The centrepiece debate of the week will be on 'Make it Happen', the party's 'vision and values' paper. The document highlights key areas of focus for the party, including plans to: Deliver big tax cuts for people on low and average incomes paid for from taxing pollution and closing tax loopholes used by the rich

Invest more in the education of the most disadvantaged children

Deliver on an ambitious green agenda, including forcing energy companies to pay a large share of their windfall subsidy to help homes use energy more efficiently

Protect civil liberties, scrapping ID cards and introducing a Freedom Law to get government off people's backs and keep personal data private

Clean up the political system and bring an end to the influence of big money on politics

Conference begins a day earlier than previously, on Saturday, in an effort to make it easier for party members who cannot take weekdays off work to take part in debates.

What's coming up over the week -


In the morning party members will take part in a number of consultative sessions, discussing education, the environment and childcare, to put forward ideas for policies that will come back to the conference for debate next year. The conference officially opens on Saturday afternoon, with debates on giving citizens a voice in Parliament and the party's new policy paper on domestic and international security. Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Jenny Willott will make a keynote speech, and the evening will see the traditional conference rally, on the theme of 'Power to the People'. Nick Clegg is among the speakers.


Sunday morning sees speeches from Shadow Schools Secretary David Laws and new Scottish leader Tavish Scott. There will be debates on PFI schemes and social mobility. In the afternoon, Nick Clegg takes questions from party members in a Q&A session, plus there are debates on pensions and crime. The party's spokesperson for families, Susan Kramer, will make a keynote speech.


The day opens with a debate on the Party Reform Commission report, which sets out how the organisation of the party can be made more effective to get more Liberal Democrat MPs elected. Shadow Health Secretary Norman Lamb and Shadow Chancellor Vince Cable will make keynote speeches. In the afternoon the main debate is on the Make it Happen paper (see above). There will also be a discussion on environment policy.


In the morning the party will put forward its response to the housing and mortgage crisis, a well as debating transport. Shadow Home Secretary Chris Huhne and Party President Simon Hughes will both be making keynote speeches. In the afternoon there will be a debate on Europe and a question and answer session on the economy.


There will be debates mental health and personal data, before the conference is concluded at lunchtime by Nick Clegg's leader's speech.

Full details, including the final agenda, fringe listings, policy papers and useful forms are available on the conference details page. During the conference the party website will carry texts of speeches, news articles on all motions, a conference photo gallery and a rolling conference update page with details of speakers and the results of all votes