This weekend's conference in Harrogate marks the first anniversary of Ming Campbell's election as leader of the Liberal Democrats. It's no great secret that I did not support his campaign, but I have been pleasantly surprised by his first year in office.
I think he compares well to Blair, Brown and Cameron. Cameron is just Blair Mark 2 and there's no evidence that the public has any great regard for him. Brown signed the cheques for the war in Iraq and is just as culpable for Labour's failings as Blair. Ming, on the other hand, brings authority, consistency and an unwavering Liberal approach. I would sleep a lot easier in my bed if Ming were making the decisions on global and internal security and justice. I like also the change in emphasis on taxation - the Green Tax Switch.
Within the party, he has made some incredibly sensible appointments. There also appears to be a less combative approach towards the grassroots of the Party - some previous leaders' offices have tended to treat the activists as a minor inconvenience, and this is definitely not the case with Ming's team. He is also giving significant time and effort into encouraging greater diversity amongst our candidates.
In Scotland, Ming and Nicol complement each other very well. Ming has the expertise to restore our global standing and to work towards a more peaceful world, while Nicol's passion for the environment and giving young people all they need to fulfil their potential is exactly what Scotland needs at the moment. They also seem to like each other, and talk to each other sometimes in contrast to Blair and McConnell and there's not much evidence that David Cameron knows who Annabel Goldie is.