Sunday, November 14, 2010

Congratulations to Tim Farron, new Liberal Democrat President Elect

I spent yesterday at the fabulous PICamp event in Edinburgh - of which more later, probably tomorrow, given the F1 today.

One highlight of the day was when my friend Emma came up to me to tell me that Tim Farron had won the Liberal Democrat presidency by 1643 votes over Susan Kramer.  The margin of victory is a tribute to the high quality campaigns run by both Tim and Susan over the last 6 weeks.

Susan had some very good ideas about improving communication within the party which need to be taken on board.

I am delighted for Tim and for his campaign team who have worked tirelessly and enthusiastically.

The turnout was disappointing, but I suspect this is a function of our Party's rather ridiculous system of not giving presidential candidates membership lists. In previous campaigns, candidates have had months if not years to build up their own contacts. I add my voice to Jennie's in calling for a change to all the Federal Election rules. I mean,  we are a party which believes so strongly in campaigning, yet we don't allow our own candidates for internal elections to do it. I could see the rationale 30 years ago, when it would have taken some money to build a national profile, but in the days of the internet, anyone can afford to do so.

Anyway, congratulations again to Team Farron. I will be watching Tim to make sure he keeps to his word, but he usually does, so I'm expecting great things from him. I think he will be perfect at cutting through the bile Labour are throwing at us and we need a champion of his calibre.

Here is the video of the declaration at Cowley Street yesterday. It's available on You Tube here.

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