Did you catch Sir Menzies Campbell’s speech at the Liberal Democrats’ party conference? Quite a defiant performance for such an old stager and some nice lines from his speech writer. On Boris Johnson’s candidacy for London Mayor, ”the blondest suicide note in history’ was quite cutting and his reference to ‘boom and bust in the NHS’ was a point well-made. I even liked his spoof of the Soap spoof itself, ‘Gordon wants to be like Maggie but doesn’t want to be like Tony; Dave doesn’t want to be like Maggie or Ian or Michael or William but he does want to be like Tony. Confused?’ etc. But despite all the clever little lines and rather neat way he tried to make a virtue of his age, his presentation style is still hopelessly wooden.
There’s intelligence but no charisma; integrity but little personality shining through. And in a savvy media-age he just comes across as a benign old headmaster. He seems a decent bloke but the Lib Dems have frankly no chance with Ming at the helm. And as pet names go, Ming’s about as appealing as headlice. Is it just me or is it not time for change? Ironically though, that performance has probably secured his position until the next election. How ruthless can the Lib Dem’s young turks be? Are they ready to deliver regime change? The Tories wouldn’t hesitate to assassinate their lame-duck Emperors. Their problem is in choosing a replacement. Gordon must be sat there with a large grin enjoying the tonic.