The Liberal Democrats have just announced Vince Cable as their new leader, and he’s not exactly the best choice if the Lib Dems want to win back the hearts and minds of students.
Back in 2010 Vince Cable was the Business Secretary in the Tory/Lib Dem coalition government – a time when Nick Clegg and his power-hungry Liberal Democrats thought it wise to maniacally rip up their core manifesto pledges to help students.
Despite pledging to oppose tuition fee rises in their 2010 manifesto, Cable and the Lib Dems were firmly behind the government’s idea to raise tuition fees from £3,000 to £9000 – the highest university fees anywhere in the world.
At the time, and to the huge anger of students, Vince Cable attempted to defend the extortionate rise signed off by the Tory and Lib Dem coalition, saying:
The coalition government has developed a package that is fairer than the present system of student finance and affordable for the nation.
Access to higher education will be on the basis of ability, not ability to pay. No one will have to pay upfront tuition fees. We are extending loans for the cost of tuition to the majority of part-time students. No one will contribute until they can afford to do so – when they are in well-paid jobs.
This came despite the Lib Dems pledging to oppose tution fee rises altogether in their 2010 manifesto.
The result of their disastrous disloyalty to the younger generation led to a catastrophic backlash from students, and ultimately saw former Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg losing his Sheffield Hallam seat in June.
And now the appointment of Vince Cable to the vacant Lib Dem leadership position will have done nothing to heal the wounds of betrayed younger generation.
It was just over two weeks ago that Cable himself said scrapping tuition fees would be ‘dangerous and stupid’ in a Sky interview:
The new Lib Dem leader said scrapping tuition fees was a “cheap populist gesture” and would would create an unfair system.
If you don’t have any form of fees, I mean who pays for universities?
So there you have it.
Both the Tories and the Lib Dems are now in favour of maintaining tuition fees at £9,000 – the highest university fees in the entire world.
If you want your kids to graduate with up to £50,000 worth of debt, make sure you vote Lib Dem in the next election!
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