Lib Dem Voice polled our members-only forum recently to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Over 500 party members have responded, and we’re publishing the full results.
Vince, Ed and Michael: the Lib Dems’ top trio in government
This question allowed an unprompted, free-text response, which c.450 of our respondents rose to. And here’s what you told us:
1. Vince Cable (144)
2. Ed Davey (70)
3. Michael Moore (42)
4. Steve Webb (35)
=5. Danny Alexander (30)
=5. Nick Clegg (30)
7. Lynne Featherstone (22)
8. Norman Lamb (19)
9. David Laws (16)
10. Norman Baker (12)
11. Jo Swinson (11)
12. Jeremy Browne (10)
=13. Nick Harvey (5)
=13. Sarah Teather (5)
(Note: only Lib Dem ministers who scored 5+ votes are mentioned here.)
Vince topped this same poll last year, but by a narrower margin. In 2012, the Lib Dem business secretary scored more than twice as many votes as his nearest runner-up, Ed Davey. It was another good 12 months for the sage of Twickenham. Even the Lib Dem-phobic Daily Mirror championed ‘Plan V’ while many of the other papers chattered about the prospect of him eventually succeeding Nick Clegg (you can see what I thought of that prospect here).
One of last year’s runners-up to Vince was Chris Huhne: this year it’s his replacement as energy secretary Ed Davey. He’s had a busy year: fighting for renewable energy in the teeth of George Osborne’s opposition (and that of his deputy John Hayes) and producing an energy bill designed to decarbonise the economy while protecting consumers’ fuel bill in the medium/long-term.
And then in bronze medal position is Michael Moore, the Lib Dem scottish secretary rightly lauded for his pivotal role negotiating the Edinburgh Agreement that secured Scotland’s right to an in/out independence vote in 2014 (and indeed for giving 16/17 year-olds the right to vote).
Danny Alexander, who last year came second, again poll strongly — tying this year with Nick Clegg — but is edged into fifth place by the party’s pensions maestro Steve Webb.
Tomorrow we publish the results of which Lib Dem minister party members think has had the worst year…
* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and editor of the 2013 publication, The Coalition and Beyond: Liberal Reforms for the Decade Ahead. He is also a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum and writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.