Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

My vote in the presidential election

That is, in the election for the post of President of the UK Liberal Democrats, of which I have been a member since the party was founded in 1988.

The two candidates are Simon Hughes and Lembit Öpik, both members of parliament, both of whom I have met. Simon has been an MP since the astonishing 1983 Bermondsey by-election, Lembit since the 1997 general election. Simon is clearly the more "establishment" candidate, with 90-odd big names backing him, including several people I'm personally friendly with like Chris Davies MEP, Baroness Falkner, Baroness Ludford MEP, and Neil Sherlock. Lembit has only about a third as many endorsements (at least in the freebie literature circulated to all party members), but they include two people I've been very close to in the past, David Howarth and Ben Rich. Simon's policy agenda is awfully slight and includes much usage of the word "build". Lembit points to his personal record in human resources development. The one strike against Lembit is that he flaunts his fianceé, TV weather forecaster Siân Lloyd, as if to point up the fact that Simon is still a "bachelor" at the age of 53. However, for various reasons (not least the fact that he grew up in Northern Ireland) I still like Lembit better and am casting my vote for him. I expect Simon will win though.
Tags: lib dems, people: lembit opik, uk politics
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