Jo Swinson heckler drowned out by anti-Brexit protesters ahead of Lib Dem manifesto launch

20 November 2019, 14:33

By Maddie Goodfellow

Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson was heckled by a protester as she arrived at a Cambridgeshire primary school ahead of the launch of her party's manifesto.

Ms Swinson faced harsh words from one protester when she arrived at the school in Trumpington.

As the Liberal Democrat campaign bus arrived, a man could be heard shouting "120,000 needless deaths propped up by a Liberal Democrat coalition.

"120,000 needless deaths under austerity. Neither liberal, nor democrat."

His shouting then starts to be drowned out by anti-Brexit protesters waiting for Ms Swinson. They started chants of "stop Brexit now" over the top of his protests.

He repeats "120,000 deaths under austerity", adding "tuition fees were all backed up by a Liberal Democrat-Tory government".

Jo Swinson was heckled on her visit to Trumpington primary school
Jo Swinson was heckled on her visit to Trumpington primary school. Picture: LBC News

The Liberal Democrats visited the town as part of the launch their manifesto for the December 12 election, which has put stopping Brexit at the heart of their campaign.

The manifesto pushes for a £50 million "remain bonus" to be spent on public services and tacking inequalities if the party manages to stop Brexit.

It also sets out plans to tackle the climate emergency and have 80% renewable energy by 2030, provide free childcare from nine months and recruit 20,000 more teachers.

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said: "This manifesto is a bold plan to build a brighter future for our country, and that starts with stopping Brexit.

"Labour and the Conservatives can't offer the country a brighter future because they both want Brexit. We know that will be bad for our economy, bad for our NHS and bad for our environment.

"Our politics has been dominated by the two, tired old parties for too long. This election provides an opportunity to change the future of our country and build a brighter future with the Liberal Democrats."

Jo Swinson has pledged a "remain bonus" as part of her manifesto
Jo Swinson has pledged a "remain bonus" as part of her manifesto. Picture: LBC News

The 100-page document pledges to revoke Article 50 in the event of a majority Liberal Democrat government on December 12.

It says: "The election of a Liberal Democrat majority government on a clear stop Brexit platform will provide a democratic mandate to stop this mess, revoke Article 50 and stay in the EU," the manifesto says.

"In other circumstances, we will continue to fight for a people's vote with the option to stay in the EU, and in that vote we would passionately campaign to keep the UK in the EU."

They also estimate the economy will be 1.9 per cent larger in 2024-25 than it would be under Boris Johnson's Brexit deal, giving them extra funding to spend on their priorities in the years ahead.

Jo Swinson
Jo Swinson. Picture: LBC News

The manifesto also promises to reverse frontline budget cuts for schools in England since 2105 with an emergency cash injection of £4.6 billion next year.

It says that by 2024/25, they will be spending £10.6 billion more on schools than is currently being spent, enabling them to increase the number of teachers by 20,000 over five years.

The party is also promising that mental health services would be treated with the same urgency as physical health with a £11 billion cash injection over the lifetime of the parliament.