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.
- No, we didn’t call the flag nasty. (James Baker)
- Liberals gather in Bournemouth to pioneer new strategies to rebuild and win again (Liberal Democrat International Office)
- Dear English Party, is there something you’ve forgotten to do? (Caron Lindsay)
- The battle for a better Europe starts in Bournemouth (Liberal Democrat International Office)
- A woman’s place at Conservative Party Conference – walking with Dave, not talking on panels (Caron Lindsay)
- Disused railway stations in Staffordshire
- Free Cambridge event to mark the centenary of 'shell shock'
- Six of the Best 544
- Action On Energy and Green Deal Communities
- Fixing Cheadle's hole in the wall
- Olivia's university graduation, with Diana and Maurice
- Single Transferable Vote 101 (or, why no-one in Britain knows how to report it properly and what they can do about it)
- Les Misérables/The Wretched, by Victor Hugo
- I'll be on Johnnie Walker's Radio 2 show this Sunday afternoon
- Great News from Scotland: Lib Dem gain from SNP!
- Bolano 9th Oct - 11:36pm
@David Evans What is being discussed here isn't representative democracy. If we follow Matthew Huntbach's reasoning, a smaller share of the vote for both the...
- David Evans 9th Oct - 10:39pm
@ Matthew Huntbach - I too am sorry, but it is sad to hear a good Lib Dem like yourself describe a rationally argued point...
- Phyllis 9th Oct - 10:17pm
Richard Underhill Cameron, Osborne and Gove are great mates. Gove and May loathe each other. So May gets the cold shoulder. Yes sometimes things are...
- Phyllis 9th Oct - 10:13pm
The irony of a (seemingly) all-male panel of contributors taking over this thread, started by a Lib Dem woman, about the role of women in...
- David Wallace 9th Oct - 8:54pm
Might donate tomorrow. I admire his balls (pardon the pun). Well done Stephen!
- David Morrison 9th Oct - 8:49pm
I remain to be convinced of the alleged benefits of education campaigns in this regard. If some people are genuinely ignorant of the harm to...