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Coronation or Election

It is rather sad for Charles Kennedy to end up resigning the way he did. He did get the party to the best result for a third party since the 1920s. It also means that the party members have not had the chance to vote on the issue.

This means it is crucial that the party members have a chance to vote as to who the next leader is. Next Saturday is the "Meeting the Challenge" Conference.
I shall continue consulting with party members and activists until after that Conference and make a decision as to whether or not to formally stand in the election then.

I think it is important that there is a contested election this time. Many of the MPs will back Ming Campbell. We owe it to our activists to give them a real choice.

If it is a Campbell-Hemming battle then I would argue the case that I am a potential candidate with a lot of real experience of running things successfully rather than successfully running :-)

However, Ming Campbell is a very effective and impressive politician and if he wins the election I am sure he will do a good job.


Ryan said…
As a party we really need an Election.
If the only way to get one is for you to stand, I'll sign any papers.
Stephen Glenn said…
I'm seeking an election as I have just blogged. Sadly John if I were to rank all the 61 eligible MPs in order of preference I fear you are nowhere near my first 10 preferences.

I seek a serious challenger/s to Ming.
Graham Smith said…
My predictions are that Cable, Campbell, Clegg, Hemming and Hughes will seek to be nominated.

In the end, Nick Clegg will become leader. If he doesn't quite make it this time, my guess is that his ambitions will ensure there is a contest immediately after the next General Election.
David Taylor said…
What are you drinking John?
TonyK said…

I would rather have candidates that demonstrated honour and integrity, than the current crop of "oh it's such a tragedy , I am wearing my sincere face"

Ming, you don't convince me of your honesty or integrity in this issue, nor does Simon "Oh I was nowhere near this terrible tragedy , should I run?" Hughes and the rest of his gang of sycophants.

Kennedy was stabbed in the back,in an orchestrated and planned attack , and the people who did this disgusting deed from their dark corners and safe under their rocks with the other spineless creatures should not be supported by we the members.

I really don't want to see the party dragged back 20 years as we become uber-fluffy . We need to grow a very big and very sharp set of teeth to take this Government and "New improved ToryBoy" on.

This action has done the LibDems real damage, and we need strong personalities now to stand in the leadership challenge , and show we are not busy consuming each other in some gruesome Tory-like Danse Macabre

Those personalities are self-made men , appealing personalities and straight talkers like Lembit and John.
Suz said…
John, good on you - go for it if you are serious to get the ball rolling. It's no laughing matter

Quoting from an email I received this evening it sums up my feelings and I suspect the majority of party members

"I am concerned to hear suggestions that some in the Parliamentary Party are talking about uniting behind a single candidate. If this were to happen it would deny the membership a fundamental right enshrined in our constitution. It will be bad for the Party too as suspicions that the departure of Charles was orchestrated by one or two in the Parliamentary Party will be gain ground".

We need an election not a coronation.
TonyF said…
Stand for leadership? Honesty and integrity?
Aren't we forgetting something you kept quiet about until after you were elected John?
John Hemming said…
Given that you (TonyF) knew in May 2004 about Emily, I don't think you can claim that.

OK so we didn't press release about Isobel until the 2nd trimester. I don't think that is unreasonable.