Jonathan Fryer

Writer, Lecturer, Broadcaster and Liberal Democrat Politician

Lembit Woos Loughton

Posted by jonathanfryer on Wednesday, 8th October, 2008

  My zone 1-6 Oyster card took me to Debden this evening, where Epping Forest Liberal Democrats hosted a pizza and politics addressed by Lembit Opik, MP, who is on the party presidential campaign trail, but also being motivational — or inspirational, as he put it. He had Stephen Kearney, our candidate in the recent Henley by-election, with him and their joint message was about reaching out to people in local communities, listening and using language that they can understand. Inevitably, media issues came up — no, Lembit is not going into the Big Brother house in January, as the Sun confidently reported — but Lembit maintained that celebrity can be useful in opening up channels of communication with people who are usually switched off from politics and politicians. Of course, George Galloway said the same thing, though he DID make the mistake of going on Big Brother.

Lembit argued that the next President — whether it is him, Ros Scott or Chandila Fernando — should not be concerned with policy matters, which should be the province of the Leader. But there were appreciative rumbles round the room when he indicated that he would like to rattle the bars at the Cowley Street party HQ sometimes. He also championed the value of fun — which I suspect may prove to be either his making or his undoing.


3 Responses to “Lembit Woos Loughton”

  1. faceless said

    was George Galloway on Big Brother?


  2. jonathanfryer said

    Yes, he was on Celebrity Big Brother in January 2006. The highlight (?) of his stay was when he was dressed up in a lurid pantsuit, pretending to be a cat, licking imaginary milk from the hands of the actress Rula Lenska. That went down a bomb with the predominantly Muslinm electorate in Bethnal Green and Bow.

  3. Teek said

    illuminating to see Lembit in his element, I enjoyed his light-hearted but policy-heavy rhetoric. imploring us Lib Dems to be braver, not to court centrist opinion but rather to reach out to voters with confident policy positions hit many buttons with me, I hope the party under his stewardship would take such a brave direction.

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