If you’ve not got anything nice to say…

by Stephen Tall on December 14, 2005

Like other Lib Dem bloggers, I’m fed up to the back teeth with reading in the media about authoritative, anonymous sources who have told Charles Kennedy to pull up his socks.

Do I think CK is perfect? No. Does he sometimes frustrate me with his fuzziness? Yes. Has he been a successful leader? Undoubtedly. Does he deserve a bit of loyalty from a party he has led to its best position since the days of Lloyd George? Of course. Has he got the stomach to stay on as leader ’til the next election? Perhaps not.

But let’s allow him some time to decide that, and not indulge in some knee-jerk panic to the much-hyped Cameron honeymoon. We are widely regarded as a decent party committed to fairness. Now is the time to display some of those qualities.

My message to those MPs indulging in reckless media briefing against CK is simple: shut the fuck up, or else show some backbone, and say in public what you’re whispering in private.

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CK seems to be the problem in more ways than one.

Most fundamentally, he is plainly not up to the task of fashioning a coherent and desirable liberal policy programme, nor of articulating it to the public.

Perhaps understandably, nor is he able to recognise the debilitating effect that this deficiency is having on his party. What’s more, apparently a few gentle (and private) prods from his disgruntled parliamentary colleagues would not be enough to have him see the truth.

Plainly, the best case scenario for the Lib Dems was for CK to step down of his own accord, with dignity and no in-fighting. Sadly, he doesn’t seem willing to accept that.

What to do? Drift for the next four years and then fizzle and the next election? Precisely because perceived decency and fairness are so important in the political realm, it is very difficult for anyone to speak out overtly against their leader and expect to have a successful career afterwards.

by Tim Hicks on December 30, 2005 at 7:08 pm. Reply #

Do you really need to swear like that ?

by Caroline on January 6, 2006 at 9:33 pm. Reply #

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