Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Ming and the merciless

Strange goings on with the Lib Dems. Not really a surprise that they moved to oust Ming, given their poll ratings, although I think the suddenness of it all took us slightly aback in Westminster. The official line is that he nobly sacrificed himself for the good of the party, and it was solely his decision to go. But why then was the news of his resignation delivered by Simon Hughes and Vince Cable? Where was Ming when they appeared on the steps of Lib Dem HQ to deliver the news to the waiting cameras? (According to the BBC, already on the plane back to Edinburgh without even stopping to speak to the parliamentary party). And wasn't it slightly tactless of Vince Cable to talk of Ming's political career entirely in the past tense, as if he was delivering a personal as well as as a political obituary?

At least the coming contest might just flush the Lib Dems out in policy terms, with a clear choice between Nick "takes votes from the Tories" Clegg or Chris "goes down well with the left-leaning activists" Huhne. (I spent a few days with Nick Clegg in the West Bank once - entirely sound on the Palestinian issue, but very right wing). Feel a bit sorry for Ming - obviously a decent guy but patently not cut out for the leadership. Maybe Gordon will find him a job!


The Bristol Blogger said...

Could you tell us what "entirely sound on the Palestinian issue" is in your view?

Kerry said...

I think my stance on this is pretty well-documented. To summarise very briefly I'd say - supporting a two-state solution, with a Palestinian state based on pre-1967 borders, and believing more pressure should be brought to bear on Israel to comply with UN resolutions, e.g. on the illegality of settlements in the West Bank and the encroachment of the Wall on Palestinian territory.