insult to injury


Last week, I blogged about the lack of recognition of the Northern Ireland local party of the Liberal Democrats by the Federal Party website.

This evening, quite by chance, I noticed that there is a link at the bottom of the Federal Party‘s homepage for ‘N. Ireland’.

Where does this link go?

Liberal International includes both the Liberal Democrats and the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland

It goes to the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland – a sister party within Liberal International. Now, there may have been plans, or indeed hopes, in the past that the Alliance Party would become a State Party of the Liberal Democrats. I am sure that what has happened in the House of Commons, where Naomi Long, Member of Parliament for Belfast East stated before the election that she would not take the Lib Dem whip, makes it clear that there is little chance of Alliance Party = Liberal Democrats in Northern Ireland.

Stephen blogged well over a year ago about making a formal link up*,

The Lib Dems in Northern Ireland have long taken the stance that they would not contest elections but lend support to the most prominent centrist party, which is the Alliance Party with their 7 Assembly Members and 32 councillors.

but this has not happened – nor is it likely to, according to discussions Stephen had with Alliance’s executive director, Gerry Lynch. It is a fact that former Alliance leader Lord Alderdice sits as a Liberal Democrat Peer in the House of Lords, but this looks like it will continue to have no effect upon forming a formal link up.

Unless and until the Alliance Party becomes the Liberal Democrats’ State Party in Northern Ireland, the Federal Party needs to recognise that they are not this. The local party needs to be publicised, and as chair of the local party, I will be writing (not emailing) to seek the fixing of this. I will update you on the progress.

* keen readers will notice that at the time there was a link to the Northern Ireland local party on the then Federal Party website.

Northern Irish quarter of Golden Dozen


Featured on Liberal Democrat VoiceEvery week Liberal Democrat Voice produces a Golden Dozen of the top Lib Dem blogs of the week.

The Golden Dozen features the seven most popular stories beyond Lib Dem Voice according to click-throughs from the Aggregator, together with a hand-picked quintet, normally courtesy of LibDig, you might otherwise have missed.

This week a little bit of history was made as 3 of the twelve, indeed three of those most popular seven, were written here in Northern Ireland. Here is how they appeared on the list:

1. David Laws Doesn’t Want to Return to Government on Stephen’s Liberal Journal.
“It is a sad case when someone is forcibly outed and loses their va-va voom as appears to be the case with one of the sharpest minds in the Lib Dem parliamentary team.”

3. Outrage at action of liberal youth executive on Michael Carchrie Campbell’s Gyronny Herald.
Unimpressed by their endorsement of Tim Farron for President: “I am outraged by this usurpation of the members’ rights.”

5. Stephen Gilbert MP on Why He is Backing Tim Farron for President on Stephen’s Liberal Journal.
Tim Farron sets his record straight (so to speak).

Stephen has featured on the list many times in the past but this is Michael’s first appearance. It shows how on the pulse and how well crafted the blogs from the two bloggers who contribute to this blog are. We do hope to add more contributors soon.

For those of you who are aware of events over this last week this achievement is even more outstanding.

our flabber is gasted


Yesterday evening, Total Politics published its list of the top 75 Liberal Democrat blogs.

Quite how this has happened is anybody’s guess, but we are very pleased at this recognition given our rather short existence. May this be a sign of things to come.

Top 50 Scotland BlogSeriously, congratulations to Stephen on his placing at №7 in the Liberal Democrats category, and also his placing at №7 (again) in the Scottish blogs category. I wonder where he will come in the overall.