Kennedy vs Campbell
Charles Kennedy is in the news again. The media are having a field day speculating about a comeback and a possible challenge to Ming's leadership of the party.
Kennedy set to stage a comeback - Kennedy revival rattles Campbell - Kennedy denies leadership reports. Even today the national news is reporting on an article in the News of the World, 'Kennedy plot to oust Ming'. (can't find any online version to link to)
The BBC have also picked up on Peter Black's posting Time for Ming to shape up - have to agree with his opinion about Ming. When I hear him speak on the box he comes across as dull as dish water. A safe pair of hands he may be. That's all good and well if he was heading a business but in politics there has to be something special that attracts people to want to hear what a person has to say. He's a perfect gent from the old school but he just lacks the charisma to excite people. He has no oomph about him. It has nothing to do with age but the personality of the man himself. This is bound to have a knock-on effect on the party and it's beginning to reflect in the opinion polls.
Charles Kennedy dubbed Chatshow Charlie is now to host a 30 minute political show, Channel4 at 7.30pm next Friday.
Not sure at the moment if it's a series or a one off but I'll definitely be watching (video to the ready). He appeared on BBC1's Question Time last month - The other panelists and audience were captivated by his voice and response to the questions - noticed he tactfully skirted around the question about whether he might one day reclaim the party leadership. All this has done is to add fuel to the speculation.
It great to see he is moving back into the limelight and being well received. About time, seems he's at long last ending the self-imposed silence since his resignation.
At the coming Lib Dem conference at Brighton in September, Charles is billed to make an outgoing leader's speech. Expect the hall will be packed. His traditional choice of leadership introductory music, together with his mesmerising tone followed by his slow walk and meet the delegates handshake will surely live in the memories for a long time. Don't expect they'll play any music this time around but definitely many delegates will be anxious to hear him speak even for the sake of sentiment.
In contrast Ming Campbell's Conference speech at the the Spring Conference in Harrogate was just plain dry. His choice of introductory music was flat. He received polite clapping but didn't get the standing ovation attributed to the Kennedy style. Disappointingly he also left the hall rather abruptly after shaking hands with just a few people. Lets hope he does better at Brighton.
Simon Hughes was spot on when he said that Ming had until the end of the Conference season to prove himself.