That level of deep commitment which Farron obviously has, combined with his organisational skills and northern public persona, has all the ingredients of a successful leadership. I speak as one who sat in a gloomy Commons party of six after the 1970 election debacle, three of us clinging to majorities under 1000. It took time, but we turned that round, and went on both to increase our numbers and form the significant Alliance with the SDP and eventually the new united party, which at elections under Paddy Ashdown, Charles Kennedy and Clegg reached new heights of public support. The same can happen again.
A colleague said to me during this contest: “But isn’t Farron a bit risky?” I responded that that may be so, but what the party needs at this time is a risk-taker, not afraid to revisit more traditional Liberal policies – on Trident, on Europe, on industrial democracy, on land value taxation, on the pursuit of a more just society, and on the need for a federal constitution including a new upper house.
It will be a long and at times painful journey, but with Tim Farron inspiring and leading it I see grounds for real hope and optimism.
- Why I’ve just joined the Liberal Democrats (Tom Sutton)
- We are all leaders (Alex Hegenbarth)
- Liberal Democrats need to oppose this government with more passion and rage (Katharine Pindar)
- Dutch King in European Parliament: UK belongs inside the EU (Bernard Aris)
- Lord Paul Tyler writes: Party funding is back on the political agenda (Paul Tyler)
- My must-reads this week May 27, 2016
- Police seize financial accounts of local Conservative Party association
- Welsh councils could be waiting a long time for clarity on reorganisation
- Independent constituents sign petition calling for defeated Lib Dem MP to stand again
- Pupil safety outside Dundee schools
- Why the Diane James argument on immigration and the EU doesn't work
- Lib Dems pledge to oppose residents' parking "stealth tax"
- Mental Health new Mayor's priority
- Disused Railway Stations in Dumfries and Galloway
- Melling's HMP Kennet to close
- petermartin2001 27th May - 11:19am
Tom, It's good that you've taken an interest in politics. I'd like to be able to join the Lib Dems too. They'd probably have me...
- David Raw 27th May - 10:57am
Welcome, Tom. Just one point : " When my Labour-run council voted unanimously to close a respite centre for the severely disabled, it shot down"....
- Richard Underhill 27th May - 10:56am
"suzanne fletcher 21st Jan '16 - 12:05am no info on number of houses targeted as most are not reported. 2 reasons. 1. people are very...
- Psi 27th May - 10:50am
The other issue that is the simplistic narrative if it has any impact at all will simply hamper getting more women in politics.
- David Raw 27th May - 10:44am
There seems to be some confusion about the role of Headteachers and local authorities from the usual suspects who place themselves 'to the right' of...
- Psi 27th May - 10:43am
Mike Falchikov “US or Russia, do you really think that there are many people in those countries (or any foreign countries for that matter)taking an...