The problem with the Lib Dems and Labour election campaigns

Jo Swinson and Jeremy Corbyn. Photograph: PA.

Jo Swinson and Jeremy Corbyn. Photograph: PA. - Credit: Archant

Readers express their concerns about the performance of Labour and Lib Dems during the election campaign so far.

Labour are currently fighting what is being called 'the Brexit election' by trying their best not to mention Brexit.

The only possible benefit of the inevitable large Tory majority which will soon follow is that the party will have to confront their hopeless contortions on the issue over the past three-and-a-half years.

Two things could happen: A new leader closer to the centre of the party (Keir Starmer, say) could firmly establish Labour as the leading party of campaigning for what will then be a return to EU membership.

More likely, since the McCluskeyites will remain in control of the NEC, is that Labour will conclude that to regain working class votes they need to support Brexit.

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If this happens, those of us who believe Brexit to be the defining issue of our age will at least know where we stand and can get in our Lib Dem membership forms.

Alice Tyler, Birmingham

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The Liberal Democrats have made some major policy announcements on renewable energy, mental health and the £50 billion 'Remain bonus'. Although these policies are ambitious and appropriate, they lack a broader foundational narrative. This can and must change.

As internationalists, the Lib Dems have long had a difficult relationship with the language of patriotism as it is left often to the abuse of the far-right. But it is time the centre takes back control of what it means to be British.

The right believe we should be proud of being British. As Lib Dems, we too are proud of our citizenship, but have a plan to make our citizenship count for something by helping people start a business, raise a family and develop

new skill sets and hobbies. The right see patriotism as an emotion, but as Lib Dems, we know patriotism as action.

There is therefore, universal interest in strengthening the role and meaning of citizenship. Expanding the capabilities of the citizen is at the heart of our liberal message. We must be clearer on this.

Tom Parkin, Sheffield

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