Thursday, March 02, 2006

The Ming Emperor

The Lib Dems have now ditched troubled but youthful Charles Kennedy and replaced him by veteran Sir Menzies ('Ming') Campbell.
Before I'm accused of ageism I must say that I've been feeling a bit upset since Michael Howard went that all the party leaders were younger than me. In DC's case considerably so. So well done the Lib Dems for giving us one leader again who is a War Baby and my senior by at least 3 years.
Of course you're as old as you feel and I'm taking time to get accustomed to the fact that people don't think of me as 'young Johnston' any more. But Ming has a bit of an air of Alec Douglas-Home about him - basically decent, a cultivated Scot, quite an expert on foreign affairs. Sir Alec was one of the nicest men I ever met in politics but he wasn't an election winner. I don't think Ming will be either. Only time will tell whether he's as nice as Sir Alec.
There is, though, one important question both the Lib Dems and Labour will have to face (assuming Brown succeeds Blair): in post Devolution Britain, can a Scottish MP be a credible Prime Minister?

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