Jo Swinson welcomes online alternative to conference season


Taking Power invites people to participate in daily debates on the recommendations of the Power Inquiry

Jo Swinson MP has welcomed the launch of Taking Power, an online “virtual conference” designed to re-engage people in political discussion.

Arising from the publication of the POWER Report earlier this year, Taking Power is an alternative to the traditional Party Conferences that take place each autumn. The conference runs from now until October 6th, and anyone is free to take part by visiting www.takingpower.org.

Jo commented:

“As highlighted by the publication of the POWER report earlier this year, there is a real and pressing need to get people back into politics.

“Taking Power provides an alternative to ‘Conference season’ for people who are not involved in traditional party politics. It allows people to debate the recommendations of the POWER report and put their views across to prominent members of the three main parties.

“Taking Power is particularly aimed at young people, who it is important develop a voting habit that will stay with them throughout their lives. Traditional party connections are far weaker among young people, so the non-partisan nature of Taking Power makes it well suited to promoting open debate, wide-ranging discussion and fresh ideas.”

Taking Power was launched by Ming Campbell on Wednesday, 7th September. People are invited to take part in daily debates and public opinion polls on the Taking Power website www.takingpower.org. Special events, such as debates with political figures, will also take place over the conference month.

The final report of the POWER Inquiry was published in February 2006, two years after the Inquiry was set up to explore how political participation and involvement in the UK could be increased. Its recommendations included: Decentralisation of powers from central to local government; Reduction of the voting age to 16; Capping of donations from individuals to parties at £10,000, with state funding to support local activity by political parties and independent candidates. These findings were debated at a Conference in May by leading politicians including Ming Campbell and David Cameron

The 2006 Liberal Democrat Federal Conference is being held in Brighton and runs from 16th-21st September.


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