Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Tim Farron; I'll not be checking birth certificates at my surgery
If Simon Hughes is the comfort food, the custard, or mashed potato, for the Liberal Democrat soul, President Elect Tim Farron is the gutsy, spicy chilli that warms, reinvigorates and motivates us. To people who aren't political activists, he's a down to earth guy who talks a lot of common sense.
He's just been on BBC Breakfast talking about all the shenanigans of the last 24 hours. Now, he could have been bogged down in the minutiae of what Vince and other Lib Dem ministers said but he used the occasion to give a very effective and common sense look at the coalition as a whole and the nature of compromises within it.
He talks about how the Coalition is a business arrangment, not a marriage, and how both sides have had to make compromises for the good of the country. Sian Williams tried to divert him into tuition fees, but he raised her by mentioning kicking Trident into the long grass as a big Liberal Democrat win.
He talks about how this coalition is a lot healthier and grown up than the rancour filled Blair-Brown coalition which preceded it.
One of the reasons for voting for him is that he was pretty clued up on what was going on around the country, and he highlighted the successes of the coalitions in Belfast, Edinburgh and Cardiff, making the point that people and journalists in those places are more used to how coalitions works.
He also said that he's not going to asking for birth certificates and proof of being a constituent at his surgeries - the next of which will be going on around now - and that he would be as candid and human with people as he always has been.
I don't think anybody expected anything else, but he covered a lot of good and positive ground in his inimitable style in just a couple of minutes. The next two years will be fun!