This has to be encouraging news - people are responding well to the way in which Nick and our MPs have conducted themselves in a very stressful week since the election.
I also understand that the party has been calling members just to check how they feel about the coalition deal and even in Scotland the response has been very encouraging.
One of the advantages of being a Lib Dem member is that the party consults you on things. Every single member is invited to a special conference on Sunday 16th May at the NEC in Birmingham. Although only certain people can vote, the whole party is invited to contribute and can feel free to say exactly what they like.
The Conference is not being asked just to endorse the Coalition Agreement but are also invited to suggest future areas for the Governemnt to work on. Baroness Ros Scott, Party President e-mailed all members saying:
Just as importantly, we also need to know what you think the priorities are for further work. The initial agreement doesn’t cover many areas of policy, and further statements will be developed. This is the first opportunity party members will have to input into those discussions about the future direction of the coalition.
No other political party gives such influence to its ordinary members. It's well worth joining because you can make a difference.
My personal experience of speaking to people I know who aren't involved in politics is that there's a lot of goodwill to the coalition. Obviously some scepticism as well, but people understand the reasons why we went into it.
Stephen writes about how he's received invitations from here, there and everywhere to join other parties. Although like him, I will be staying put and would not contemplate joining any other party, it would have been nice to have been asked. Harumph!