12.5% of LibDem Parliamentary Party Elected Leader

Westminster stops still for the most riveting news since the election:

Tim Farron received 56.5% of the votes and in second place Norman Lamb received the backing of 43.5%.

It’s Farron.

Senior LibDem Demands Resurrection of Charlie Kennedy

A somewhat unfortunate blogpost went up on the LibDemFuture site yesterday written by Gareth Epps, a former parliamentary candidate who sits on his party’s federal policy committee. Among Epps’ musings about the future direction of the LibDems, published by the site last night, is this suggestion:

“Our federal structure and the presence of several political heavyweights are advantages that should be used. Demonstrating the Scottish Party’s independence from London as well as high-profile roles for senior figures – Charles Kennedy, perhaps – would be a confident and positive way to face the future.”

It would be positively miraculous. Er… who’s going to tell them?

UPDATE: Gareth gets in touch to lay the blame at the door of LibDemFuture:

“I published [the original blog] on 27 May on my website www.garethepps.org.uk – at a time when Charlie Kennedy was very much alive.

Evidently some idiot – no way of checking who from here – has reposted it without reading the actual blog, or apparently linking to it.”

LibDem LOL

They don’t know when it happened, or why, but the LibDems were left disappointed when they pulled up the Chancellor’s Twitter page to look at his Budget photo this morning:

Safely the most retweeted LibDem press office tweet ever…

Theresa May Urged to Launch New Handycock Probe

Self-confessed teen fondler Mike Hancock might have lost his seat but he is not out of the woods yet. The Tory, Labour, UKIP and even LibDem group leaders in Portsmouth have all written to Theresa May demanding that the police take action:

Dear Mrs May,

We, the undersigned councillors of Portsmouth City Council, feel compelled to write to you about the failure of Hampshire Constabulary to investigate and take appropriate action regarding allegations of serious misconduct surrounding former councillor and MP Mike Hancock…

As you may know from national press reports, the careworker for a vulnerable adult (known as ‘Annie’) with mental health issues reported to Hampshire Constabulary in 2010 that Cllr Hancock had sexually assaulted or harassed Annie, in proper compliance with the Safeguarding Adults Policy. We have been informed that two male police officers then visited ‘Annie’ and counselled her not to pursue her complaint, because Cllr Hancock was a powerful person…

In the light of recent similar cases, where Hampshire Constabulary have admitted failures in procedure and in fact paid substantial damages, we view this situation to be of professional concern and unacceptable. We would therefore urge you to order an independent inquiry as to why Hampshire police have taken no action in this case, and, if necessary, make direction that the case should be looked at again by a police force other than Hampshire Constabulary.

We believe that this is the only way in which public confidence in Hampshire Constabulary might be restored in this case. This letter is a summary; all points raised in this letter can be evidenced.

We would appreciate a full, written reply to this letter which is of great importance to victims of alleged sexual abuse.

Yours faithfully,

Cllr Luke Stubbs, deputy Tory council leader

Cllr John Ferrett, Labour group leader

Cllr Steve Wemyss, Tory group leader in 2010, when the matter first surfaced

Cllr Colin Galloway, Ukip group leader

Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, Lib Dem group leader

Handycock went from 18,921 votes in 2010 to 716 in 2015, so the people of Portsmouth certainly cottoned on that he was a wrong’un. Significant that all four parties are demanding action…

Sad Press Release of the Day

Former MP Stephen Lloyd lands West End director role

After narrowly losing his seat as the MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon, Stephen Lloyd was one of many former parliamentarians looking for a fresh challenge after May’s general election. However, it hasn’t taken the popular politician very long to re-start his career in business after being appointed Business Development Director at West End, an international event, broadcast, multi-media communications and exhibition company based in Eastbourne.

Less “Who, What, Where, Why and When”, more “Who, Who, Who, What, Why”?

LibDems Ask Crosby Textor Fullbrook for Help

ctf

The LibDem’s Head of Strategic Research, Tom Smithard, has written to CTF, the firm run by Lynton Crosby, Mark Textor and Mark Fullbrook which was hired by the Conservatives at great expense to do their polling and give campaign advice. Guido has been passed Smithard’s strange request:

…  As part of the Liberal Democrat general election review I’ve been asked look into how exactly the Conservatives managed to beat us in the marginals.

I appreciate there are some – maybe many – aspects to your work you wouldn’t necessarily want to detail to former opponents, however vanquished. However I was wondering if you or a member of your team would be willing to speak to me and unlock some of the secrets of your targeting strategy, polling work, ground campaigning etc. I’m sure we’d find whatever you had to say most instructive!

If you have any time to spare and are willing to talk me through some of your work I’d really appreciate it.

Best regards
Tom

Guido asked the LibDems if they were perhaps being a bit naive? They admitted, on reflection, that they “expect the response will come in two words”.

An amused CTF insider suggests they should have asked Lord Ashcroft, who unlike CTF loves telling Labour and the Lib Dems what to do to win…

Charles Kennedy Died From “Major Hemorrhage”

Charles Kennedy died from a “major haemorrhage” that “was a consequence of his battle with alcoholism”, his family tells Press Association. 

Charlie Kennedy 1959 – 2015

Family statement:

‘Charles died at home in Fort William yesterday. He was 55. We are obviously devastated at the loss. Charles was a fine man, a talented politician, and a loving father to his young son. We ask therefore that the privacy of his family is respected in the coming days. There will be a post-mortem and we will issue a further statement when funeral arrangements are made.’

Police:

‘Police officers attended an address at Fort William on Monday, June 1 to reports of the sudden death of a 55-year-old man. Police were notified by ambulance service personnel. There are no suspicious circumstances and our report will be submitted to the procurator fiscal.’

Rest in peace, Charlie…

UDPATE:

Full Clegg statement:

Harriet Harman:

Sturgeon:

Farage:

Blair:

Cameron:

Paddy Ashdown:

“The odd thing is that they say today ‘nobody has experience outside politics’; Charles had no experience outside politics, he was actually elected at the age of 24 – to all our surprises, but his surprise as well. And one of the problems about the House of Commons is it does rob you of your youth if you go in that young and no doubt that has an effect on all personalities. But the question is: did he rise above that? Was he able, despite that, to be able to make contact with ordinary people, well beyond the circle of politics? Answer: yes, and very powerfully so.”

Ming Campbell:

“He was regarded by the public as not like other politicians because of his distaste for adversarial politics. That strengthened his appeal as well as giving rise to a deep respect.”

Alastair Campbell:

“He was great company, sober or drinking. He had a fine political mind and a real commitment to public service. He was not bitter about his ousting as leader and nor, though he disagreed often with what his Party did in coalition with the Tories, did he ever wander down the rentaquote oppositionitis route. He was a man of real talent and real principle. Despite the occasional blip when the drink interfered, he was a terrific communicator and a fine orator. He spoke fluent human, because he had humanity in every vein and every cell.”

Top LibDem: Forgive Carmichael Because All MPs Lie

Ex-LibDem deputy leader Malcolm Bruce hasn’t done Alistair Carmichael any favours with his intervention on the Today programme this morning, suggesting the people of Orkney and Shetland should forgive him because all politicians lie:

[gigya src=”https://abfiles.s3.amazonaws.com/swf/audioboom_default_player_v1.swf” style=”background-color:transparent; display:block; min-width:300px; max-width:700px;” flashvars=”image_option=none&imgURL=&link_color=%23c10000&mp3Author=jeremywils0n&mp3Duration=51826.9&mp3LinkURL=https%3A%2F%2Faudioboom.com%2Fboos%2F3217150-malcolm-bruce-on-alistair-carmichael&mp3Time=08.56am+26+May+2015&mp3Title=Malcolm+Bruce+on+Alistair+Carmichael&mp3URL=https%3A%2F%2Faudioboom.com%2Fboos%2F3217150-malcolm-bruce-on-alistair-carmichael.mp3%3Fsource%3Dwordpress&player_theme=light&rootID=boo_player_1&show_title=true&waveimgURL=https%3A%2F%2Fd15mj6e6qmt1na.cloudfront.net%2Fi%2Fw%2F2611188″ width=”540″ height=”150″ allowFullScreen=”true” wmode=”transparent”]

Bruce: “If you’re telling me that every MP who hasn’t quite told the truth, or even told a brazen lie [should go], including cabinet ministers, including prime ministers, we’d clear out the House of Commons very fast.”

BBC: “You’re saying that lying in public life is widespread?”

Bruce: “No.

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

Carmichael Confesses: I Did Leak Sturgeon Memo

Ousted ex-LibDem Scotland Secretary Alistair Carmichael has confessed it was him who leaked the infamous Nicola Sturgeon memo claiming she wanted the Tories to win the election.

The former Scottish Secretary admits all in a statement:

“I had not seen the document before it was published in the Daily Telegraph, however I was aware of its content and agreed that my special adviser should make it public.

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

First Major Exhibitor Pulls Out of LibDem Conference

tc-2015

Guido understands that party conference exhibitor TechCentral is not planning on going to the Liberal Democrat conference in Bournemouth this year, instead they are planning to go for the first time to the SNP’s annual conference as well as the Labour and Tory conferences.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

Vinda-who: Farron / Mulholland / Lembit’s Late Night Poppadom Plot

LibDem MP Greg Mulholland is doing little to dampen speculation he is running for leader of his party. He’s twanking any mention of his ambitions and being coy with the press:

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

Left in a Vacant LibDem Office in Parliament…

Slightly bitter taste…[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

So, How Did Lord Oakeshott Do?

So how did former LibDem Lord Oakeshott do in his £600,000 donation spending spree that he described as “doing his bit to save UK from Tory government cringing to Ukip”. Just six candidates he backed financially won their seats. As for the rest?[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

Another Broken LibDem Promise

During the election campaign Danny Alexander claimed that he would be leaving a reply to Liam Byrne in the drawer of the desk of the Chief Secretary to the Treasury. It wasn’t very witty:

Well sadly it seems he’s broken that promise. […] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

LibDem Leadership Election Timetable

Following the agreement of the Liberal Democrat Federal Executive and the party’s returning officer please find below the timetable for the election of the new party leader of the Liberal Democrats

  • Opening of nominations: 13th of May 2015
  • Close of nominations: 3rd of June 2015
  • Dispatch of ballot papers: 24th of June 2015
  • Deadline for ballot papers to be returned: 15th of July 2015
  • Count and declaration of the winner: 

Shouldn’t take too long to count the votes.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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