How Justin Trudeau is helping Vince Cable transform the Liberal Democrats

GettyVince Cable and Justin Trudeau
  • Exclusive: A political strategist who worked for Justin Trudeau and Emmanuel Macron is advising Sir Vince Cable on how to transform the Liberal Democrats.
  • Tom Pitfield, a data analytics expert and childhood friend of Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, is helping Cable with party reforms which will be unveiled at the Lib Dem autumn conference.
  • Cable met with Trudeau at a summit in London earlier this year.
  • “A space has been created and I’m thinking about how we can move into it,” Cable told Business Insider.
  • Cable is this week celebrating the one year anniversary of his leadership of the Lib Dems.

LONDON – A former advisor to Justin Trudeau who also worked on Emmanuel Macron’s election campaign is advising Sir Vince Cable on how to make the Liberal Democrats a party of government.

Tom Pitfield, a Canadian political strategist with a history of working with centre-left political parties, is currently working with Cable on how to reform the Liberal Democrats and attract higher levels of support.

Cable met with Canadian Prime Minister, Justine Trudeau, when he visited London for a Commonwealth Heads Of Government meeting earlier this year and has been receiving advice from Pitfield, Trudeau’s childhood friend and former chief digital strategist, on how to transform the Liberal Democrats.

Pitfield is helping the MP for Twickenham with a series of reforms designed to breathe new life into the party.

Cable, who is this week celebrating the one year anniversary of his leadership of the Liberal Democrats, is preparing to announce these reforms at the party’s autumn conference in Brighton in September.

“We’ve been looking very carefully at the Canadian model,” Cable told Business Insider this week.

“There are two positive examples of insurgent parties who are coming back to life. One is France, but that situation is different from ours.

“But in Canada, which is quite similar to the UK, the centre-left party was in terrible trouble despite having been in government, and they thought about how to get back to where they were.”

He added: “Essentially, they decided it was about opening the doors, ceasing to be an inward-looking, membership club and broadening out. Tom Pitfield is currently advising me on how best to use their ideas.”

Pitfield’s data analytics company, Data Sciences Inc, struck a deal with the Canadian Liberal Party to provide it with digital support for communicating with voters after Trudeau was elected leader in 2013. Data Sciences Inc also helped Macron reach key French voters in his successful campaign to be elected the president.

Cable said that with Pitfield’s help in modernising Liberal Democrats, the party will be able to communicate more effectively with a growing number of voters who he believes feel alienated by the Conservatives and Labour.

“A space has been created and I’m thinking about how we can move into it.”

He added: “People are increasingly disillusioned with conventional politics and major parties. We haven’t yet benefited from it significantly but the negatives around the two big parties have just grown and grown.”

“Both are torn apart on Europe. Labour has a separate issue with anti-Semitism. They’re struggling to survive. This is not what the public wants to see.”

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