Susan Kramer: why you should back me for Party President

Party President candidate Susan Kramer was asked what her election would do for Scotland:

Nick Clegg and others have argued effectively that the benefits of coalition will be evident in time for the General Election in 2015.  But Scotland has elections in seven months. We have to move rapidly to the front foot to argue that the coalition is putting key Liberal Democrat policies in place and to do that we need the ammunition.

Communication is absolutely key.  This is why I will criss-cross the country not just to join local campaigns but to listen and make sure that grassroots voices are heard by the leadership and get a response.  I would expect to meet regularly with ministers/special advisors to make sure that the information you need is passed on in a timely way.  We need the kind of electronic network that we have had in general elections but with much more 2-way capacity.

In England the coalition has broad acceptance because the Tories won the largest share of the popular vote.  But in Scotland they came fourth.  The challenge to make the case for coalition but to protect our Liberal Democrat identity is therefore far more challenging in Scotland.  The Scottish Liberal Democrats must be free to develop the Lib Dem response to Scotland’s problems.  We must get across the idea that there is no conflict between promoting our distinct ideas, values and solutions and yet be a coalition partner.  The Scottish Party has handled this with great skill.

Of course I hope that the Scottish elections will lead to a Liberal Democrat government in Scotland.  But realistically all kinds of permutations are possible depending on what the voters choose.  The President may be needed to “hold the ring” if the different nations chose different solutions.  A President is there to put the party first and that will be critical.

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4 Comments

  • Richard Huzzey 14th Oct '10 - 12:17pm

    What will you do to stop Lib Dem MPs breaking their pledge on student finance?

  • Liberal Eye 14th Oct '10 - 5:44pm

    It’s pretty clear that a policy-making process that comes up with a plan that MPs effectively sign in blood only for many to renage on it a few months later has some serious shortcomings whatever the reasons for the change of mind. In fact it has never hit the spot with voters in over 20 years not is anyone seriously claiming that it contains the answer – or even the beginnings of an answer – to the mess we’re in.

    So, leaving aside the particulars of tuition fees, what if anything do you think is wrong with the policy-making process, what ideas do you have to fix it?

    Not a Scottish question I’m afraid but an important one. Same question put to TF.

  • Patrick Smith 14th Oct '10 - 9:04pm

    Where do the candidates stand on building up Membership and attracting new donations?

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