William Goodhart, Baron Goodhart

William Howard Goodhart, Baron Goodhart QC (born 18 January 1933) is a Liberal Democrat politician, a leading human rights lawyer and a member of the United Kingdom House of Lords. He is the son of Arthur Lehman Goodhart.

He was admitted to the bar in 1960 and made a Queen's Counsel in 1979.

Originally a member of the Social Democrats, he contested the safe Conservative constituency of Kensington in both the 1983 and 1987 general elections.

When the SDP merged with the Liberals, he was one of the members who participated in the merger, and he subsequently fought the Kensington by-election of 1988 under the new Social and Liberal Democrats banner, finishing a weak third.

In the 1992 general election he contested the winnable seat of Oxford West and Abingdon for the again renamed Liberal Democrats. Goodhart cut the Conservative majority by over 1,000 votes down to 3,500 but still finished second.

He was knighted in 1989 and was created a life peer as Baron Goodhart, of Youlbury in the County of Oxfordshire on 23 October 1997. In the House of Lords, he has been a spokesman for the Liberal Democrats in various capacities, usually relating to legal matters. He previously served as the Liberal Democrats' Shadow Lord Chancellor.

He is also the Chairman of JUSTICE, the UK section of the International Commission of Jurists, as well as serving as a Commissioner of the ICJ since 1993. He was elected as Vice-President of the ICJ in 2002.


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