Linda Jack is a diamond in the LibDem blogging jewel box. We should respect and cherish her.
She says “Unfortunately it’s the case where (Ming) has perhaps been over-promoted”.
That’s an interesting one, isn’t? Is the phrase “over-promoted” or indeed “promoted” apt for someone who has been elected? I have never heard, for example, someone say that George Bush was “over-promoted” or referred to an electorate in the same way as a promotion board.
The concept of promotion is normally one which relates to companies or the armed services. It refers to a boss making a decision to promote someone, or a board of senior people making such a decision.
Such a system has, over the years, come in for a lot of flak. People are often promoted for the wrong reasons, in companies and the armed services. If I had a penny for the number of times I have heard someone being described as having been “promoted out of harm’s way”, I would be a very rich man.
And of course, there is The Peter Principle: “In a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence."
So, in the case of Ming, who promoted him?
The answer is here:
Sir Menzies Campbell 23,264 votes 44.7%
Chris Huhne 16,691 votes 32.1%
Simon Hughes 12,081 votes 23.2%
Turnout 52,036 72.2%
Sir Menzies Campbell +6,433=29,697 votes 57.1%
Chris Huhne +4,937=21,628 votes 41.6%
So, after a long, hard-fought campaign, Ming had 38% more votes than his nearest challenger in the first round of voting. Then he had 37% more votes than Chris Huhne in the second round.
So, Linda Jack needs to address her “over promotion” charge to the 29,697 people who gave first or second preference votes to Ming. That was 52% of the people who voted. This by the way, was with a remarkably high 72% turnout!
Ming hasn’t changed. He didn’t put on an act during the leadership campaign. Everyone had their chance to see what was on offer and they chose Ming.
Nick Clegg said he didn’t feel he was experienced enough to stand. He is in the best position to know this. And with David Cameron we have seen what happens when someone too inexperienced becomes a party leader. Relative disaster, after a shiny start.
We have the words “Democrat” in our party title. Let’s act like Democrats and respect the decision of our party membership.
The Linda Jack rebellion was emblematic and, I think a water-shed, for the party because it was such a damp squib. The huge resources of the British Broadcasting Corporation scoured the blogosphere and rang hither and thither, all over our kingdom. But all they could manage was to get a relatively mild quote phoned in two minutes before their programme began from someone who isn’t a parliamentarian or an assembly member, who isn't a councillor and who isn't a PPC but who used to be a councillor and used to be a PPC and is on the Federal Policy Committee – not even the Federal Executive.
The fact that the BBC couldn’t get anyone else to speak, that the interview afterwards was brilliantly handled by Vince “safe hands/straight bat” Cable and that no one else joined in on the airwaves, speaks volumes for our party. Well done LibDems!
It’s not much to do with "not fitting a media agenda". It’s August for goodness sake! The Sun is so desperate they turned the sighting of a harmless basking shark off Cornwall into “JAWS 2”. The Linda Jack rebellion story made the BBC’s own online service and The East Anglian Daily Press. The story had legs shorter than those of Ronnie Corbett.
There is one essential element conspicuously missing from a few quarters of the naval-gazing environment of the LibDem blogosphere. I would put it like this by modifying the words of John F Kennedy:
..Ask not what your leader can do for you—ask what you can do for your leader.