The wit and wisdom of Nick Clegg
The day before I was elected leader , Mr Cameron suggested we join them. He talked about a “progressive alliance”. This talk of alliances comes up a lot, doesn’t it? Everyone wants to be in our gang. So I want to make something very clear today. Will I ever join a Conservative government?
No...I will never allow the Liberal Democrats to be a mere annex to another party's agenda.
Nick Clegg, Speech to Lib Dem Conference, March 2008.
Look, the decision on how we govern this country and how people vote shouldn't be driven by fear of what the markets might do. Let's say there was a Conservative government. Let's say a Conservative government announced, in that sort of macho way: 'We're gonna slash public spending by a third, we'll slash this, we'll slash this, we'll do it tomorrow. We have to take early, tough action.'
Just imagine the reaction of my constituents in south-west Sheffield. I represent a constituency that has more people working in public services as a proportion of the workforce than any other constituency in the country. Lots of people working in unviersities, the hospitals and so on.
They have no Conservative councillors. They have no Conservative MPs. There are no Conservative MPs or Conservative councillors as far as the eye can see in South Yorkshire. People like that are going to say: 'Who are these people telling us that they are are going to suddenly take our jobs away? What mandate do they have? I didn't vote for them. No one around here voted for them.'
I think if we want to go the direction of Greece, where you get real social and industrial unrest, that's the guaranteed way of doing it.
Nick Clegg, March 2010
For too long, vested interests have triumphed over doing what's right and it's got to stop. Sometimes it makes you feel so helpless - and yes, angry too - when there's so much you want to change. I bet you've all felt like that once in a while. Like there's a mountain to climb, and it's just too much to do alone. The cynicism of so much public debate doesn't help. A cynicism that mocks anyone with the nerve to speak with sincerity about what they believe. A cynicism that's given up believing in hope. But I am not embarrassed by sincerity. I am not ashamed of believing in things.
Nick Clegg, Speech to Lib Dem Conference, Spring 2008.
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