The Liberal Imperialists believed that under the leadership of William Ewart Gladstone the Liberal Party had succumbed to "faddists", sectional interests and the "Celtic fringe" which prevented it from being a truly national party. Furthermore, the Liberal Party should include people of all classes, along with promoting working-class MPs in the Liberal Party. They also argued that the Liberals had lost the centre vote because the party had distanced itself from "the new Imperial spirit". Instead, they argued for a "clean slate", that the Liberal Party must change if it is to succeed. The old, classical Liberalism must give way to the new ideas of "National Efficiency" and imperialism.
- H. C. G. Matthew, The Liberal Imperialists. The Ideas and Politics of a Post-Gladstonian Élite (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1973), p. viii.
- Matthew, p. 127.
- Matthew, pp. 128-129.
- Matthew, p. 134.
- Matthew, pp. 136-137.
- H. C. G. Matthew, The Liberal Imperialists. The Ideas and Politics of a Post-Gladstonian Élite (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1973).
- Viscount Grey of Fallodon, Twenty Five Years. 1892-1916 (1925).
- R. B. Haldane, An Autobiography (1929).
- Robert Rhodes James, Rosebery (1963).
- J. A. Spender and Cyril Asquith, Life of Herbert Henry, Lord Oxford and Asquith (1932).
- Peter Stansky, Ambitions and Strategies (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1964).