New Lib Dem Leader

I basically tuned out the Lib Dem leadership contest. Did I miss anything? Is there anything worth knowing about Nick Clegg? Did anyone write anything interesting about the contest / Party during the last six weeks or so? I suspect the answers are “no”, “not really”, and “no, I don’t think so”, but it would be nice to have confirmation from more informed Stoa-readers out there.

16 thoughts on “New Lib Dem Leader”

  1. Nick Clegg was once sentenced to community service in Germany for setting fire to some kind of ornamental tree, I think. I can’t remember the details.

  2. Huhne of course has only been in Parliament since the last General election and holds his seat by fewer than six hundred votes.

    I don’t know if this has been in the press, but this basically involves a deal with (now) Lib Dem MEP Sharon Bowles*. Prior to the last Euro-election, Huhne was first on the Lib Dem list for the South-East constituency. Bowles was second. Huhne was elected, Bowles was not.

    However, both were aware prior to the Euro-election that Huhne intended to run for the Westminster Parliament and that if he won his seat he would have to give up his European seat. Hence the quid pro quo for Huhne taking the first spot was that Bowles would campaign for him in Eastleigh and if he won – as he did – then despite actually failing to be elected herself, she would get his seat. Which she duly did.

    There may be some people who have a problem with political systems and deals in which the electorate unwittingly end up without the representative who they elected, but with the candidate for whom they did not vote. But both the individuals concerned have done very well out of the arrangement. And that’s machine politics and the closed party list system.

    [* = Who I know and, to put it mildly, do not like: nevertheless this information is correct]

  3. I thought it was rather fresh. I hadn’t followed this event either, and vaguely understood it to be another exercise in politicians manoeuvring within the barren space still defined by Blair. Anthony Barnett seems to say it wasn’t like that: both candidates were agreed on the radical policies. I hope he’s right and that someone within sight of power is going to break with Blairism. But I doubt it. Clegg’s victory speech wasn’t inspiring.

  4. ‘But not so far above superstition that he isn’t bringing his kids up Catholic?’ He is? Oh crap, and I was just about to join the LDs. Can’t join a party led by a child abuser, though.

    It worked for Billy Connolly going by his appearance on ‘Parkinson’. ‘EXPLAIN! EXPLAIN! What do you mean three-in-one?’

  5. Can’t join a party led by a child abuser, though.

    Clegg? He’s not even a Catholic! And, even if he were, there’s a reasonably important distinction between the prests who kiddy-fiddle (very very bad), the hierarchy who cover up for the, (very bad) and ordinary Catholics, who are only guilty, it seems to me, in not making a bit more noise about the issue than they are.

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