Nick Clegg's speech at Spring Conference

March 14, 2010 7:04 PM
Cllr David Kendall with Nick Clegg MP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats

Cllr David Kendall with Nick Clegg MP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats

"Vote for what you believe in… or you will wake up on May 7th facing another five years of more of the same," said the Liberal Democrat Leader.

Cllr David Kendall was at the ICC in Birmingham today to see Nick Clegg, Lib Dem Leader, deliver his keynote speech in the final conference before the general election.

Cllr Kendall, parliamentary spokesman, said:

"Nick's speech outlined the Liberal Democrats' four key principles:

  • Fair taxes.
  • A new, fair start for all children at school.
  • A rebalanced, fair and green economy.
  • Clean, open, fair politics.

"Like many Lib Dems, Nick has noticed that there is a vast and growing army of people who look at the two old parties and say "no thanks" and want something different. That difference is the Liberal Democrats."

"He reminded the conference that not one Liberal Democrat flipped their home during the expenses scandal or benefited from capital gains tax. This is one of the many things that makes us different."

"He also talked about David Cameron, asking how David Cameron can claim to clean up politics, when he can't even clean up,Lord Ashcroft, his own party's deputy chairman?"

Nick concluded his speech with these words:

"For Gordon Brown, change is what you promise when you want everything to stay the same. For David Cameron, change stops on May 7th. It's change for him, not change for you. We are different.

I want to warn you about something that is coming in the next few weeks. We are going to hear a nonsensical claim from the two old parties. Designed to scare people into voting against their best interests. The Conservatives will say: vote Lib Dem... get Brown. Labour will say: vote Lib Dem... get Cameron.

Don't believe it for a second. They are wrong.

Vote Lib Dem… get change.

Vote Lib Dem… get fairness.

A vote for the Liberal Democrats is not a vote for anyone else.

It is your guarantee of real change that works for you.

A vote for the Liberal Democrats is a commitment to hope and opportunity.

It's a vote that says:

I want government to be honest and open.

I want a green economy.

I want fairer taxes.

I want a fairer future for my children and for all our children.

I know there are many people who listen to the Liberal Democrats and really like what they hear.

But you worry that your vote would be wasted. You worry that your choice won't make enough of a difference. So you are thinking of giving your vote to someone else. Some people are thinking of holding their noses and voting for Brown just to keep out the Conservatives. I say to you: don't do it.

Some people are thinking of holding their noses and voting for Cameron just to get rid of Labour. Don't do it. You have a once in a generation opportunity for real change.

A wasted vote is one that throws that opportunity away.

A wasted vote is one for a party that is stuck in the past.

A wasted vote is one for a party you don't believe in.

How do you want to feel when you wake up on May 7th and hear the news? Would you smile at the prospect of five more years of Gordon Brown? Would you be thrilled if a Conservative government was now in charge?

If the answer is no, then don't give them your vote. If you vote for less… you will get less. If you compromise on them… they will compromise on you. Just good enough - is not good enough any more.

When you think about who to vote for remember that the future of your country is at stake. Whatever you do… do not settle for the way things are.

Be demanding.

Vote for what you believe in.

Vote with your heart.

If you once voted Labour but have lost hope. If you once voted Conservative but don't know what they stand for any longer. If you have given up voting altogether because nothing ever seems to change. Vote for something different this time.

Vote Lib Dem: get fairness.

Vote Lib Dem: get change.

Vote for what you believe in… or you will wake up on May 7th facing another five years of more of the same.

This is your chance.

This is your opportunity - for the sake of our future, do not waste it.

Choose the Liberal Democrats."

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