London Lib Dems Leap For Lembit?

By Craigie_B Last edited 137 months ago
London Lib Dems Leap For Lembit?
It's often easy to forget the Liberal Democrats these days, despite the opportunity to write alliterative headlines like that. In the last few days, it must be hard to try to top a new Labour Prime Minister swanning off for a ride in George Bush's motorised buggy, or his Conservative rival escaping the floods to Rwanda, only to return to be dogged by criticism and demands for peerages.

But as Boris and Ken start to square up with their eccentricities ready for battle next year, what about the Liberal Democrats? They came 3rd in both the 2000 and 2004 elections, so you've got to ask if it's really worth it this time, for them. They did pick up 80,000 more votes the second time round, with Simon Hughes bagging about 25% of second preferences (not a bad showing at all) but it doesn't yet feel like a springboard to success in 2008.

This can't helped by the complete vacuum currently sat awkwardly in the place of any sign of a candidate. Several names have been brought up and linked to the 2008 contest, often quite suddenly - but just as swiftly those London leadership ambitions seem to have been extinguished. The latest is none other than Lembit Opik - an MP best known for his asteroid fixation and some naughty goings-on with a Cheeky Girl. Just one slight problem, as he himself says, with his constituency being 205 miles away.

So the party is back to trying to think of someone else - Lib Dem dithering can't be good news for their party's profile as Boris and Ken nab all the headlines.

Ken, Boris and Lembit would indeed be a fun competition in one sense. But in another way, the democratic choice would be a smorgasbord of middle-aged straight white maledom. With London allegedly the most diverse city on earth (which we think it is), can't we do better than that? Just a thought.

Lembit pic from salimfadhley's flickr stream

Last Updated 01 August 2007