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Webchat with Tim Farron MP, leader of the Liberal Democrats, Tuesday 19 July at 12.30pm

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BojanaMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 14-Jul-16 14:52:21


We’re pleased to announce that LibDem leader Tim Farron will be joining us for a webchat on Tuesday 19 July at 12.30pm.

MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale since 2005, Tim was national party president of the LibDems before being elected leader after Nick Clegg’s resignation in May 2015. One of eight LibDem MPs in the current Westminster Parliament, he says that his focal points since assuming the leadership have been ‘fighting for unaccompanied refugee children to be given sanctuary in Britain, securing much needed relief funding for communities devastated by last winter’s floods, and promoting investment in education as the cornerstone to a fair and equal society’. Along with the rest of the LibDems, he campaigned for ‘Remain’ in the recent referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU.

He is married with four children, and is a big Blackburn Rovers fan.

Please join us on Tuesday at 12.30 to put your questions to Tim, and as ever, if you can’t make it on the day please post up your questions in advance on this thread. And do bear in mind the webchat guidelines - one question each only (follow-ups allowed if there’s time) and please do be polite


LineyReborn Thu 14-Jul-16 16:44:57

Hello Tim,

Can you please be really clear, and give detail, on your views on abortion, in the UK including Northern Ireland?

Would the Lib Dems make abortion less difficult to access for women, thus ensuring that the process can happen much, much earlier where that's the woman's decision?

Thank you.


JamieVardysParty Thu 14-Jul-16 16:45:48

Do you regret your party's decision to introduce the Fixed Term Parliaments Act now?

Also, if you are so insistent that there should be a General Election, to provide Theresa May with the all-important mandate, why don't you table a motion calling for it yourself?

Or would this purely be for your own political interests?

StrawberryTournament Thu 14-Jul-16 17:24:35

Hello Tim,

I understand that you've tended to vote against raising car fuel tax, but also against reducing public transport fares or capping fare increases.

I used to travel by train often, but train fares these days are so much less affordable, so I rarely use the train now. I wonder how many others find they are now "priced out" of making train journeys as much as they'd like. Surely it would also be better for the environment if people were encouraged to use public transport rather than cars more often.

Would you consider supporting better, more affordable public transport and environmentally friendly travel options in the future?

crossroads3 Thu 14-Jul-16 18:07:12

Hi Tim

What is the current LibDem position on Proportional Representation?

For me the UK is now in desperate need of it. How can we, ordinary citizens, help to bring it about?

I am so glad there is a pro European party in Parliament. Knowing this has really helped in the chaotic and distressing weeks since the referendum.

tangerino Thu 14-Jul-16 18:15:36

Hi Tim

I'm a Lib Dem supporter and really hope the party can gain ground- we really need you!

My question concerns the amount of coverage that the Lib Dems get, especially on the BBC. Seems to me that they get far less than eg UKIP despite having more MPs.

How does the party plan to become more visible? What can we do to help?

Quills Thu 14-Jul-16 18:23:19

Hi Tim,

I joined the party after the 2015 General Election and have been working hard to promote our aims since then, but one of the major stumbling blocks I come up against when discussing the Liberal Democrats with people of my generation is the tuition fees and what they call the Lib Dems' 'broken promises'. How would you answer those people, and what is the party's policy on tuition fees going forward?

wispaxmas Thu 14-Jul-16 18:51:10

Lib dem voter in a heavily conservative constituency here, sadly my vote barely counts for anything, so I'm hoping the party can make back ground elsewhere.

My question concerns the party going forward. With the conservatives lurching to the right and labour veering further left, do you think that the lib dems will be able to take advantage of the fractures forming in the other two main parties to become a more substantial centrist party? With more room and less of a squeeze between the two main parties, do you think the lib dems will manage to grow and attract more voters? Might need to get the message out that not everything in the coalition was a failure, it galls me that the lib dems as the tiny partner in the coalition get all the flack for 'mistakes' and blamed for conservative policies, but absolutely none of the credit for things such as raising the tax bracket and the marriage (same sex couples) act.

SoThisIsSummer Thu 14-Jul-16 19:12:20

but train fares these days are so much less affordable, so I rarely use the train now. I wonder how many others find they are now "priced out" of making train journeys as much as they'd like

I live next to a train station and I have not used it for years, cannot afford too, not even on a sunday - there is no way we can outlay over £30 just for tickets for us, before we even get to our destination.

Thats not factoring in, crowded trains ( even on a sunday) very unpleasant esp with young dc.

Anyway did I see you on TV seriously saying you would try and get us back in the failing hideous project we know as the EU? shock agaisnt the will of the majority?

SnowBells Thu 14-Jul-16 19:41:34

I like the fact that the LibDems are pro-Europe. People keep on saying that this is the "will of the majority". 30-odd percent is not the will of the majority!

This referendum should never have been called! Most people (including me - and I have two degrees, that included politics and economics!) don't know enough to make a decision like this. This is WHY politicians are paid. WTF were they thinking?

Also - how can proportional representation finally gain ground in the UK? It's badly needed.

TheCunkOfPhilomena Thu 14-Jul-16 21:37:27

Hi Tim,

You've recently made claims that you will be fighting to keep the UK in the EU. I am a member of a pro EU Facebook group that has over 45,000 members and is seeking to do the same (come and join us!).

What do the think the chances are of a second vote being called once we have actual facts about what leaving would do to us (rather than the speculation that both campaigns were based upon beforehand)?

I'm thinking it could be a vote to decide between the Norwegian model, the Swiss model, or having some actual evidence as to what this would look like, the option of remaining.

scrappydappydoo Thu 14-Jul-16 23:44:01

Hi Tim,
The government seems to be an absolute mess at the moment. I honestly don't know whether to laugh or cry at each turn of events. We are quite frankly an embarrassment. Even my 10 yr old is horrified at what she sees as 'all the bad behaviour' of the mps - lies, backstabbing etc. Please give us some hope - not just words but action.

JessicaLeo1980 Fri 15-Jul-16 08:37:57

Hi Tim,
I have been a Lib Dem supporter for many years but live in a Conservative area who mainly voted leave in the referendum. I am British and my partner is Portugese. We have one son with another baby on the way at the end of next month. I would like to know that my family are safe to remain together in the UK now that the Tories are trying to use families like mine as pawns. We have a mortgage and my partner has worked and paid taxes in the UK for over 12 years yet he didn't get a vote. It seems the government are happy to accept EU Citizens taxes but aren't interested in listening to them. Please can you confirm what the Lib Dems will be doing to try and secure a future in the UK for families like mine? We are currently exploring getting my son dual nationality as he was born here but I would like him to retain the rights of an EU Citizen.

TresDesolee Fri 15-Jul-16 12:27:57

Hi Tim (have you considered 'Come on Tim!' as your campaign slogan by the way? grin)

Brexit: accept it, or fight it tooth and nail?

EnidButton Fri 15-Jul-16 13:39:41

Proud to have you as my MP. Thank you for all your hard work.

Have to keep up the Mumsnet tradition and ask, what is your favourite biscuit?

derxa Fri 15-Jul-16 13:53:39

Hi Tim
I'm at my wits end with politics at the moment. I'm not a conspiracy theorist but do you believe the newspaper barons in this country have a tight grip on public opinion? If so how do we counteract it? I'm sick of the spin and lies which have led us to the Brexit vote and also the attacks on Jeremy Corbyn by the Labour right. Also I'm a potential Lib Dem voter. Explain why I should vote for you.

Doobigetta Fri 15-Jul-16 18:22:49

Hi Tim
LibDem member here- thanks for standing firm on Europe.
I'm really hoping that, with a split in the Labour Party seeming inevitable in the next few months, you'll be able to work more closely with the moderates in Labour. We share a lot of common ground with them, and I think it's in all our best interests for the pro-European parties to work together to keep us as close to (IN) the EU as possible. Is that something you're working on, and are you optimistic about it?

MummyLostInParenthood Fri 15-Jul-16 20:47:25

Hiya Tim, I am one of the thousands of new Lib Dem members to join recently, and I am interested in your view / the Lib Dem position on faith schools. I know many parents like them, but surely in a truly liberal society school should be a space where children have the freedom to develop their choice of faith for themselves? In a culture where too many prejudices still exist, it appals me that we would choose to segregate our children in this way. So, I'm hoping your stance aligns with mine, fingers crossed..

Either way, thank you for giving me a bit of hope in the recent dark days!

pastaofplenty Sat 16-Jul-16 10:45:27

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

lljkk Sat 16-Jul-16 14:59:45

Could you ever consider an electoral pact with Labour, to keep the Tories out of govt? Where LDs & Labour didn't oppose each other in some seats to avoid dividing the left wing vote?

Mner Sat 16-Jul-16 18:04:59

Just out of a meeting with my local MP re next steps post referendum. She's a remain supporter but despite our consituency voting to stay in and the strength of remain support in the room, she does not want to challenge the referendum result in anyway.

For those of us still reeling from the results, what can we do next to ensure the 16m remain voices continue to be heard? I've signed the petitions, written to my mp, attended the post referendum meeting...

General election?

prettybird Sat 16-Jul-16 22:27:01

Given that it would appear that many some people voted Leave as a result of disenchantment with, and a sense of disenfranchisement from, the political process, to what extent do you think that the LibDems have contributed to that, given that Sir Malcolm Bruce attempted to justify that lying during an election campaign was understandable or acceptable, on the basis that if "^every MP who has never quite told the truth or indeed told a brazen lie - including ministers, including Cabinet ministers, including prime ministers - we would clear out the House of Commons very fast^"

Has the LibDem's message not been undermined by the lack of trust that they themselves have encouraged; why should people then believe anything that politicians say?

dontrustcharisma Sun 17-Jul-16 00:45:37

What are your plans for reconecting the many disenchanted people in the North who have not been part of the economic boom.

TolpuddleFarterOATB Sun 17-Jul-16 04:36:03

I'm a Labour voter, and in recent years been a Labour party member. I am frightened by the recent turn the Labour party has taken. Can you give me some reasons why I should cancel my Labour party membership and come and join you instead?

CormoranStrike Sun 17-Jul-16 09:15:13

I live in Scotlans, and am upset to be now be in SNP land, with no credible opposition. Can lib seems offer anything to tempt voters north of the border?

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