Chris Davies MEP: Why I’m backing the pinstriped radical

Chris Davies MEPChris Davies wrote the following comments for the Liverpool Echo:

It was 10 years ago. Ming Campbell was addressing the Liberal Democrat conference and I was waiting my turn to speak. I saw on the stage an establishment figure dressed in a pinstriped suit, every inch a Scottish barrister. He’s too far to the right for me, I thought.

Then I listened to his words. People often think Ming Campbell talks sense about difficult issues. As the party’s foreign affairs spokesman he has gained respect across the party divide. But what I heard displayed not just wisdom but also passion, a fierce commitment to the promotion of human rights and individual freedom across the world. My kind of Liberal, I thought.

Liberal Democrats have more MPs than at any time since the 1920s but we are still the third party. If we are to grow then our leader has to look like a potential Prime Minister. Campbell fits the bill.

His first priority will be to tackle the most important issue of all, the future of life on this planet. “It’s the environment, the
environment and the environment,” he says, that plus a fight against the poverty that divides and weakens our society.

This is a man who grew up in a tenement. He was lucky, he went to university and became an Olympic athlete. But anyone who grew up in Glasgow during the 1950s knows something about poverty. He thinks it unjust that those on low wages pay proportionately more in tax than high earners.

To move forward on Merseyside our party has to turn its local support into parliamentary victories. Campbell understands the task ahead. He took the Liberals from fourth place to win his North East Fife seat. He knows what it’s like to be a party activist fighting an uphill struggle.

Exactly 100 years ago another Liberal leader called Campbell took the party to its greatest every election victory, and presided over a radical, reforming government whose members included Asquith, Lloyd George and Churchill. The present day Campbell possesses authority, wisdom and common sense in abundance. I want him to set his sights just as high.

One Response to “Chris Davies MEP: Why I’m backing the pinstriped radical”

  1. Quaequam Blog! » How to sell Ming Says:

    […] As I’ve got myself into deep water for being critical of the defensive nature of the Campbell campaign, I feel I should point out an example of the right way to do it by Chris Davies MEP (whose backing counts for a lot in my book). Davies, a former marketing expert who has an excellent record in getting the media to cover that most ignored of subjects, the goings on in the European Parliament, has opted to brazenly sell the man, and not the team. That’s the way you do it, Nick. […]

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