, 10 tweets, 4 min read Read on Twitter
Vince Cable giving the final speech of #sldconf. Says cracks are appearing in the duopoly that has dominated UK politics for the last century. This is an opportunity for the Lib Dems, he says - but these are deeply uncertain times Vince Cable
Vince Cable says “the country needs an early general election like it needs a hole in the head”, but he fears Theresa May might see the temptation. “We have to be ready” - party has been studying key target seats. “We have a plan.” Vince Cable
Vince Cable says people are bored and confused by Brexit, but there’s also “a lot of anger”. Other issues desperately need attention, but government is entirely absorbed by Brexit. “Massive problems in this country are just not being dealt with.” Vince Cable speech
Vince Cable says we should still be asking the question, “why on Earth are we leaving the European Union?” Praising the EU both for opening up economic links and maintaining peace, he says “tearing this up is an act of monumental vandalism” #SLDConf
Vince Cable says the threat of no deal was originally meant to be leverage in talks with EU, but is now being used to twist reluctant arms on the Tory and Labour benches. He doesn’t think it’s “remotely likely” to actually happen, but the prospect is terrifying businesses Vince Cable speech
Vince Cable says the threat of no deal “plunging the country into economic chaos” is “wickedly irresponsible”. Next couple of weeks will be about taking this “nonsense” off the table - and he says there are the numbers in the Commons to do this Vince Cable
On the emergence of the Independent Group, Vince Cable says “surely we must welcome the breakup of the old duopoly in British politics”. Says neither Labour or the Tories are broad churches any more; both parties have been taken over by “extremists” at the grassroots level
Vince Cable says the Independent Group is to an extent a “Westminster bubble phenomenon”. Says Chris Leslie being “eaten alive” by Question Time audience shows that “these guys are going to find life in the real world hard going” Vince Cable
Vince Cable closes his #sldconf speech saying that the opportunities for Lib Dems are “phenomenal”. “I think we’ve got a really bright future.”
Hold the phone, that last tweet appears to have sat unsent in the time it took me to drive home from Hamilton, only to then finish uploading in Edinburgh.

To be clear, Vince Cable did not give a two and a half hour speech.
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