Here’s the timetable just agreed by the party for the Liberal Democrat leadership contest:
Opening of nominations: 13th of May 2015
Close of nominations: 3rd of June 2015
Dispatch of ballot papers: 24th of June 2015
Deadline for ballot papers to be returned: 15th of July 2015
Count and declaration of the winner: 16th of July 2015
This is the swifter of the different options considered by the Federal Executive. Declaring a new leader on the day of my birthday was considered leaving it too late. You’ll just have to get me chocolate rather than a new leader instead.
June 3rd is a key date because that is the date for determining the electorate: anyone who is a member as of that date, or no more than three months behind with their membership subs, will be able to vote.
That’s another good reason to encourage people to join and be part of the surge in party membership that has taken it back over 50,000. You can join the Lib Dems here.
The other significant date from a membership perspective is 13 May as the Federal Executive is still looking at the idea I’ve been pushing of letting declared leadership candidates have lists of lapsed members, so they can encourage them to rejoin in time to vote.
If that decision goes the right way (and it’s still not finalised, so if you agree with me do drop Party President Sal Brinton a quick message), then it means leadership candidates will potentially have the period from 13 May to 3 June to contact lapsed members and encourge them to get back involved with the party.
That could add a significant extra boost to the party’s membership, which would be another helpful step towards a successful rebuilding process. More on that in the latest Liberal Democrat Newswire.