Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Decisions

The media have obviously decided that "the story" is the fall of the Liberal Democrats. So, we are going to have to put up with endless stories of minor defections and alleged "crises" for some time to come. However, I think that we should be looking beyond this rather purple patch.

I do not believe that David Cameron, even if he is able to become Prime Minister, will be an effective, let alone a Liberal (or even liberal), leader. He will be more attractive than his predecessors, who were mostly awful: Major, Hague, DFS and Dracula. In such company of course DC looks better. He may well get his party together and even win. However this is just the pendulum of politics. What Liberal Democrats must do now is to distill Liberal principles into a coherent programme for government.

The Labour government has shown that over government and micro management is not the answer. Liberal Democrats must show why local control and smaller government is more efficient. All DC offers (openly at least) is the same but better managed. Liberal Democrats must offer a genuinely radical policy mix.

After careful thought I have decided to support Menzies Campbell's campaign. After the shocks of the past few weeks, in any event I might have favoured a period of stability and reflection while we hone our policies and develop our front bencher team. However, the fact is that Ming offers a collegiate and genuinely Liberal approach to leadership. Under his leadership, I believe that our next generation have a chance to shine. He is disciplined and focused and actually looks like a Prime Minister. He is the leader who our political opponents most fear. I respect both Simon Hughes and Christopher Huhne but I believe that Campbell offers us the best chance to gain the keys to the kingdom and will be voting accordingly.

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