LIBERAL DEMOCRATS MUST NOT BE FROZEN OUT OF ELECTION DEBATES

LIBERAL DEMOCRATS MUST NOT BE FROZEN OUT OF ELECTION DEBATES

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Ros Chappell started this petition to Amber de Botton - Head of ITV politics

1. The Guardian has reported that both Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn are angling to freeze out the Liberal Democrat leader, Jo Swinson, in election leaders’ debates.

2. It reports that Johnson dodged a question from Swinson when she challenged him to a three-way-debate, and Corbyn’s spokesman claimed “There are only two possible people who can be prime minister at the end of this election campaign, and those two people should have a head-to-head debate.”


3. This is undemocratic, unacceptable, and incorrect. While the First Past the Post electoral system makes it very unlikely that the Liberal Democrats will win the election with a majority, it is not impossible. And it is possible that Lib Dems end up leading a minority or coalition government, with Jo Swinson becoming Prime Minister.

4. The Lib Dems have surged in popularity in recent months. In the 2019 EU elections, they outperformed both Conservatives and Labour. They also made huge strides in the 2019 local elections.


5. Because both Corbyn and Johnson rejected a single-issue referendum to resolve the Brexit impasse, the forthcoming election has become a de facto referendum. The UK has been split by Remain and Brexit, with Remain leading almost exclusively in the opinion polls over the past 28 months, Liberal Democrats are the dominant Remain Party. Both Labour and Conservatives have supported Brexit.

6. The Liberal Democrats will campaign for UK to remain in the EU, with the pledge that a majority win in the election will be a mandate to revoke Article 50. They must have the opportunity to present their policy in the debate.

In the interests of a fair general election, we demand that ITV insist Ms Swinson be included in all leaders’ debate, and that all political parties fielding candidates in a significant number, as well as Independent MPs, are represented in party debates.

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