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Absolutely right about the dearth of policy ideas from the Lib Dems. From a purely tactical point of view I'm not sure wqe should be doing anything to undermine Mings leadership,he's quite useful to us where he is.

Why be surprised about the attack on Ming? A deal with the Lib Dems will be over Ming's half dead body.

Gordie's his mate and Ming has the FO job in his sights.

Laws can't be that clever if he turned down such a good offer.

Malcolm - until the next GE the Lib Dems have no choice but to keep Ming as their leader. Tactically we should highlight every one of his weaknesses so that Lib Dems become ever more despondent at their hopeless position.

Having said that, I feel sorry for Ming. He seems like quite a decent sort of fellow and it's not pleasant to watch him suffer in this way.

Gove's spite is presumably in no way connected to the fact that Ming squashed him like an insect during an imperious put-down of his intervention during the recent Iraq debate, causing Gove to look extremely foolish (to the amusement of many senior Tories) - see recent Private Eye "Gavel Basher" column

Valedictoryan:until the next GE the Lib Dems have no choice but to keep Ming as their leader

The same theory was said about Kennedy in 2006, Thatcher in 1990, Thorpe in 1970s, Macmillan in 1963, Eden in 1957 etc etc etc. and for all I know, Walpole in 1742. Whether they really have "no choice" I wouldn't bet against someone reaching for the dagger if things turn south for them.

"Take a gander at the Lib Dem party website and you’ll find that all its spokesmen’s statements are reactions to what the other parties are doing — with scarcely a fresh idea from one month to the next."

Conservatives.com is a policy-free zone too.

"the nation’s dwindling number of Liberal Democrats. For the country’s third party, the last 12 months have been arid times. ... It is striking that the eclipse of the Liberal Democrats should coincide with Ming’s accession to the leadership."

This is wishful thinking on a massive scale.

I would love to think that the Lib Dems are "dwindling" and have been "eclipsed" by the new-look Cameron Conservatives but any impartial reading of the evidence shows that this is not true.

The LDs might not have advanced their support since the last election but they are still high enough to stubbornly hold 40 or so seats at the next election that we will need to form an overall majority (and remember the LDs usually increase their poll ratings by a few % in a general election). There is no evidence whatsoever that we are doing well enough to win back Kingston & Surbiton, Twickenham, Sheffield Hallam, SE Cornwall et al, all of which we held comfortably in 1992 and will need to win again to become the majority party in parliament.

The LD record in recent by-elections ie Fife and Bromley is also as worrysome as ever.

We continue to underestimate the Libs at our peril.

You cannot cut a deal with a party that has no real raison d'etre, that exists solely as a protest vote for a bunch woolly thinking idealists.
By all means attract the brightest and tempt them over, but one has to be constantly on the QV with the turncoats, once a traitor, always suspect.

Liberal Democrats are idealists, George Hinton? Not like the Conservatives then!

Interesting views from Gove - could this be in retaliation for the fact that (according to Private Eye) Ming humiliated Gove in the Commons a few weeks back, and was cheered at least in part by Tory MPs who think that Gove is consistently positioned above his station...

I must say, Gove could out-wonk even David Miliband...

While there is undoubtedly some truth in Gove's words, his lightweight status means this attack should prove to be nothing more than water off a lame duck's back.

It's a backhanded compliment to Michael Gove that certain elements (are they Lib Dems or anti-neocon far rightists, I wonder?) are expending energy attempting to trash him here. Go and read Hansard, there was no Ming triumph.

Let's face it, what his detractors dislike about the Gover is his effective advocacy of sound Conservative positions, including support for America, opposition to Islamism and unashamed love of Queen and country. The fact that he is an extremely bright and personable chap merely makes him a more dangerous adversary in the eyes of the people (person?) who traduce him above.

Carry on, MG!

I tend to agree with Kevin. We do, though, have a small chance in Kingston and Surbiton!

Thanks Justin. I hope you're right about Kingston.

Gove's spite is presumably in no way connected to the fact that Ming squashed him like an insect

No surprise there. Gove is an insect.

If I were planning Labour's advertising strategy for the next election I'd use Gove's picture to symbolise the chinless face of modern "Conservatism"

It's a sad fact that since I became a somewhat semi-detached member of what was once the greatest party in the world, our dwindling party has become the preserve of "Anoraks" and other oddities.

I'm sure this is purely coincidental.

Gove is a top class snitch and bulletmaker for those he controls and steers.

You can put the names of those he influnces in yourselves I think.

When the going gets tough he will be one of the first to point a finger before jumping ship.

Rat Fink springs to mind a lot at the mention of his name here.

Gove's oppostion to Islamism, Al Banna? Does the Conservative Muslim Forum know about this?

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