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20 September 2010

Conference 2010 Lookahead | Monday 20 September

The who, when and where of the Lib Dem conference.

By Jon Bernstein

Look out for

Nick Clegg‘s keynote speech this afternoon which is scheduled to start at 4pm. Clegg is speaking today, rather than at the close of the conference, so he can represent the government at the United Nations summit on Millennium Development Goals in New York.

Clegg is expected to make a bullish defence of his decision to go into coalition with David Cameron’s Conservatives against the wishes of many on the left of his party. He is likely to say to his audience: “Imagine if we had turned away. How could we ever again have asked the voters to take us seriously?”

But in a concession to the same doubters he will attack tax evasion: “We all read the headlines about benefit fraud. We all agree it’s wrong when people help themselves to benefits they shouldn’t get. But when the richest people in the country dodge their tax bill that is just as bad.”

Signs of trouble?

A policy motion this morning on Free Schools and Academies will call for the rejection of proposed coalition education policies, and seek assurances that local authorities retain control of schools in their area. The motion says the Conservative-led plans would “increase social divisiveness and inequity”.

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On the fringe

Cable on cuts: The economics of “progressive austerity” starts at 1pm. New Statesman editor Jason Cowley talks to the Business Secretary, Vince Cable about the best way to secure our economic recovery. More details.

Conference timetable

09:00 – 11:00 Consultative Session: Facing the Future

11:00 – 12:20 Policy Motion: Free Schools and Academies

12:20 – 12:40 Speech: Kirsty Williams AM

14:30 – 15:35 Policy Motion: Green Taxation

15:35 – 16:00 Party Awards

16:00 – 17:15 Speech: Nick Clegg MP

17:30 – 18:00 Standing Order Amendment: Day Visitors Speaking at Conference, Standing Order Amendment: Questions to Parliamentary Party Reports, Standing Order Amendment: Summation Speakers, Standing Order Amendment.

Full conference timetable here.

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