Daily View 2×2: 8 December 2009

A year ago today, Kirsty Williams was elected Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats – the first female leader of a political party in Wales.

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

  • Our fishy democracy
  • Duncan Stott’s worked out that in roughly 87% of seats, more people didn’t vote than voted for their MP. He proposes a visual way to remind “politicians to engage more with their constituents, and also the public to engage with politics.”

  • No trifling matter
  • Haringey Councillor Richard Wilson on patronising name-calling in the council chamber.

Spotted any other great posts in the last day from blogs that aren’t on the aggregator? Do post up a comment sharing them with us all.

2 Big Stories

A long walk to victory
The Guardian’s Dave Hill on an issue which affects not only London pedestrians, but those living in any urban area:

Here are some useful facts. There are 2,244 signalled junctions in Greater London that include pedestrian crossing facilities, and 2,477 “stand alone” pedestrian crossings that have lights. Eleven percent of all signalled crossings lack either bleeping noises or tactile aids, which make them less safe for blind or partially sighted people. At the last count around 400 did not comply with the Department for Transport’s most recent design standards, which TfL adopts, though work on correcting this seems to have accelerated in recent months.

These stats have been unearthed thanks largely to the persistence of London Assembly Liberal Democrat Caroline Pidgeon, who also chairs the assembly’s transport committee. She has remorselessly pursued the issue of road-crossing safety with TfL and Boris Johnson, and I’m grateful to one of her press office colleagues for bringing the fruits of her labours to my attention so comprehensively.

Commons official is sorry over search of MP’s office
Serjeant at Arms Jill Pay, who consented to the police search of Damian Green MP’s office has been giving evidence to a Commons Committee investigating the arrest.

From the BBC:

The cross-party committee headed by former Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell is looking at how Commons authorities should in future deal with requests for police searches.

Appearing before the same committee in November, Lord Martin said he had been “let down” by his colleague who he said had failed to require a warrant for the search and had known about the police investigation for a week before Mr Green’s office was searched.

Another official had blamed police tactics for the Serjeant at Arms not alerting her superiors, he told MPs.

When he asked her to explain her conduct, he said Mr Jack had stepped in to say the officer in charge of Commons security had “bamboozled the Serjeant and tricked her into keeping the matter from her immediate superiors”.

The Metropolitan Police has rejected suggestions that its officer acted in such a way.

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