Susan Kramer: Party members are my number one priority

This is a time of great opportunity for our party. Whether through establishing the pupil premium for disadvantaged children, increasing tax relief for low income families, restoring vital civil liberties or putting the environment at the forefront of all we do, our values are at the heart of British government for the first time in generations. Britain is better off with Liberal Democrats in Cabinet.

A strong and unified party is needed to hold the Coalition Government to account, however, and division within the party will only make this job harder.

If elected as party President, I will use the role to help hold us together and to strengthen our distinctive Liberal Democrat voice and future. I see these as the key tasks:

  • To listen to our grassroots and make sure that local views are heard by the leadership and answered;
  • To support local party campaigns up and down the country to win the crucial AV Referendum but also to succeed in local, Scottish, Welsh and London elections, promoting our distinct Liberal Democrat values;
  • To keep our party unified as the Tory and Labour parties, abetted by the media, try to tear us apart and damage our shared Liberal Democrat principles.
  • As President I would tour the country, listening to local party concerns and ideas and making sure these are heard by the leadership. Ten years ago I campaigned with every local party in London during the Mayoral election and that same determination to work alongside you would drive my Presidency.

    I believe the President has important responsibilities to make internal party structures work more effectively and responsively, expand the membership and diversity of the party and make sure that the grassroots, leadership and our professional team are in synch with each other. But above all, the role must facilitate the communication between members and leaders.

    I owe this party so much for all the opportunities, excitement and support it has given me. Literally hundreds of you from across the country came to help me in campaigns for the London Mayor and for Parliament. This is my chance to give a little back to all of you and ensure future success for other Liberal Democrats. Our shared values are crucial to making our country a better place.

    Please give me your backing in this election for President of the Liberal Democrats.

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    This entry was posted in Party Presidency.


    • You certainly have my backing, Susan. The President’s priority should indeed be listening to and representing local parties. It’s also important that the role of President is the primary focus of whoever is elected and, much as I admire Tim Farron, he will inevitably have constituency and parliamentary duties.

    • John Fraser 20th Sep '10 - 7:32pm

      On the whole a very good posting
      Just curious
      •To listen to our grassroots and make sure that local views are heard by the leadership and answered”

      This is curious wording did you mean local views should be taken on board by the leadership or simply that they should be responded to ?

    • Increase ethnic minorities in the party and other under-represented groups such as the disabled,unemployed and LGBT.

    • Susan has a lot to say about the the constitutional role of the Party President, and hints that she thinks the party should be expending its energy promoting its policies and values rather than propping up Cameron’s right-wing Tory government. So far so good. What I would like to hear is a recognition that the party needs a surrogate leader to replace the de jure leader who considers himself bound by Cabinet collective responsibility not to do the job members elected him to do nearly three years ago.

      Also, I have to be convinced that Susan has the killer instinct. I say that because I am unable to fathom how it was that an intelligent, hard-working, seemingly popular MP managed to lose her seat to a work-shy, chain-smoking twit. Was Susan too “nice” to dish the mountains of dirt on this pampered wastrel? In politics, self-preservation sometimes means getting one’s hands dirty.

      I do take the point that a serving MP is unlikely to have the time to do the job justice.

    • Completely behind Susan. She is one of the most impressive politicians in the party and its a terrible shame that she lost her seat to the shallow Zac Goldsmith.

    • @Sesenco

      I think her constituency was always a difficult one to hold on to this election year. And don’t forget the resources that Zac could call on.

    • George Aliwa 25th Sep '10 - 4:47pm

      You have good policies and its my hope that you will win and impliment them to the good of the human being.

    • Keeping the membership involved and consulted during our time in government is one of the hardest tasks we face.

      I am very pleased that this is Susan’s priority. I also think this role would be best done by an ordinary member (ex-MP) rather than a parliamentarian as they would have more time to devote to it.

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