What are Liberal Democrat members voting for? LDN #130

Liberal Democrat Newswire #130 came out on the day voting was meant to start in the Liberal Democrat internal elections. For the latest on the issues with the voting, and why some people had their votes cancelled, see my update post. Otherwise, read on for all the other news…

Dr Mark Pack's Liberal Democrat Newswire - email header


Today’s the day emails should be landing and posted ballot papers starting to arrive in the Liberal Democrat party elections – not only for Party President but for a slew of other important roles too. More on what’s up for election and what to do if you don’t receive a ballot below. But first a super-quick mini-poll on the Party President election:


Happy reading,


In this edition:

How to vote

If the party has a working email address for you in the membership records, you should get an email on Saturday 26 October from elections@libdems.org.uk with online voting instructions for both Party President and also the various other party bodies up for election. Watch out in your spam/junk folder for this email if you don’t see it land in your inbox. It will have the subject line, “IMPORTANT: Your ballot paper”.

However, if the party does not have a working email address in the records, then you will instead be sent a postal ballot. These started going out in the post on Friday 25 October, second class, and so all should have arrived by Thursday 31 October.

If don’t receive your ballot paper, then you can contact elections@libdems.org.uk, and if necessary a replacement ballot can be sent to you.

You will have until 5pm on Friday 8 November to vote.


Layla Moran speaking in Westminster

Why Layla Moran is backing me to be the next Lib Dem President.

Liberal Democrat party structure following governance review

What’s up for election?

Here’s what people will be voting for:

  • Party President (here’s my take on what the role involves)
  • Federal Board (chaired by the President, its primary role is to provide a strategic direction for the Party): 15 directly elected members*
  • Federal Conference Committee (responsible for overseeing the running of Conference, including the selection of motions and amendments for debate): 12 directly elected members*
  • Federal Policy Committee (responsible for researching and developing policy and overseeing the Federal Party’s policy-making process): 15 directly elected members*
  • Federal International Relations Committee (manages the Party’s relationships with sister parties internationally, and oversees the organisation and provision of training for sister parties outside the UK): 6 directly elected members*
  • Alliance of Liberal Democrats in Europe (ALDE) Council (this is the European Political Party to which the Liberal Democrats belong): 6 members
  • English Party Representative on the Federal Board: 1 member (elected by English Party members only)
  • Scottish Party Representative on the Federal Board: 1 member (elected by Scottish Party members only)
  • Scottish Party Representative on the Federal Policy Committee: 1 member (elected by Scottish Party members only)
  • Principal Councillor Representative on the Federal Board: 1 member (elected by principal councillors only)
  • Principal Councillor Representative on the Federal Policy Committee: 2 members (elected by principal councillors only)

There’s more about these posts over on the party website.

* These committees also have other, non-directly elected, members but the directly elected members are the majority of the voting membership.

Mark Pack speaking in Birmingham at a Lib Dem fundraiser

Why I’m running for Party President

Winning elections at every level gives us more of that precious political power to stop Brexit, to protect our planet, to heal the divisions in our society and to meet the needs of our local communities.

That’s why winning is so important – and that’s why I’ve put helping you win at the heart of my pitch to be your next President.

The key task for the next President is to ensure we have the right strategy and the right organisation to win, bigger and better than ever before – in local government, in the London Assembly, in the Welsh and Scottish governments, in Westminster and in future European elections too.

That’s a task well-suited to my record and my skills:

  • Creating with former MP David Howarth the core votes strategy that has underpinned our recovery since 2015
  • Co-author of the party’s handbook for general election agents
  • Raising the money this year to give Liberal Democrats from seven council areas without a Lib Dem councillor an intensive programme of training and support through to the May elections
  • Successfully championing a new registered supporter scheme, now in place, growing and successful
  • Supporting the group doing the hard graft on important reforms to our disciplinary process, getting an improved, streamlined and independent system in place
  • Working with colleagues to introduce gender-balanced selection rules when the London Assembly was created, ensuring we took positive steps to improve our diversity
  • Always listening to and informing members, running the best-read Liberal Democrat website outside HQ and sending nearly 2 million emails in the last year alone to keep supporters informed about what the party is doing, why it is doing it – and how to get involved in influencing it
  • And many other examples, based on my detailed knowledge and long experience of how the party works

It is, to borrow one of our favourite phrases, a record of action… and a promise of more:


Mark Pack in front of a bookcase

Find out more about me and my plan if I’m elected Liberal Democrat Party President.

You don’t have to wait a month for the next Liberal Democrat Newswire email for further news and resources. You can check out the other email lists I run at www.libdemnewswire.com and you can also find online my guides to canvassing and leafleting, my guide to what the Lib Dems believe and my collection of online campaigning tools and resources.

Is Dominic Cummings a genius?

In the first live audience recording of Never Mind The Bar Charts, Stephen Tall talked to two people who have worked with Dominic Cumnings: Polly Mackenzie and Sean Kemp. You can hear what they made of him here.

🎧 You can also find Never Mind The Bar Charts on the web or in your favourite podcast app.

Liberal Democrat Newswire is provided for free. Thank you so much to all the kind readers who donate to help cover its costs. It’s quick and easy to sign up for a small regular donation with your debit card using GoCardless:
Thank you! (Other donation options, including by PayPal or cheque, are here.)

New Lib Dem Shadow Cabinet line-up

In case you missed them the first time around, here are the highlights from my blog over the last month:

⭐ New Lib Dem Shadow Cabinet revealed with four new MPs joining.

🎞️ The will of the people has changed: great film from the farm of a Lib Dem PPC.

What to make of the constituency poll showing Luciana Berger ahead?

New Liberal Democrat Chief Executive announced: Mike Dixon.

One of my worst moments in the Liberal Democrats…

💡 A remarkable statistic from the Shetland Scottish Parliament by-election.

Lib Dems marching against Brexit. Photo courtesy of Al Bayliss.

Liberal Democrat selection news

A striking sign of how ambitious the Liberal Democrats are being is the expanding range of seats the party is contesting seriously, going deep into territory that is Remain-leaning but with high profile Leave MPs.

Seats such as Altrincham and Sale West, which the best estimates put at voting 61% Remain but has high-profile Leave supporter Graham Brady as its MP. It’s going to be fought by Angela Smith MP, who recently joined the Liberal Democrats from what was Change UK.

Other selections of Westminster Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) are coming through at a very rapid rate now. The volume means I’m not able to blog each one individually, but they are all going up on my public list of Lib Dem PPCs.

If you have been recently selected yourself, this list of tips will, I hope, be useful.

What the voters are saying, part 1

Opinion polls round-up 24 October 2019

To get updates about voting intention opinion polls, sign up for Polling UnPacked.

To see all the historical trends for voting intention polls back to 1943 see PollBase.

What the voters are saying, part 2

Graphs from Elections Maps UK showing council by-election results summaries as of 25 October 2019

Not so many council by-elections in between editions of Lib Dem Newswire this time, but those that have taken place show a hint of a Conservative recovery starting. Labour continues to be in the doldrums and the Brexit Party and the Greens are not making a breakthrough:

🗳️ Liberal Democrats hold council seat in Watford by-election.
🗳️ Conservatives gain seats in local council by-elections.
🗳️ Liberal Democrats gain council seat from Conservatives with huge swing.

Meanwhile, the party has lost two councillors to independents in South Somerset and one to independents in Vale of White Horse.

To get the full council by-election results every week, sign up for my blog posts digest and to be prepared for a council by-election in your patch, see my 7-step guide to getting ready in advance.

Screen capture of tweet from Mark Pack encouraging people to follow @goknockdoorsld

Other Liberal Democrats in the news

Congratulations to Lib Dem peer Meral Ece for winning the CTCA Turkish Cypriot Personality of the year 2019.

“I challenge us all as politicians to stop weaponising social care and instead work together” – Vince Cable.

Legalise cannabis, says Siobhan Benita, Liberal Democrat candidate for London mayor.

Dark and dangerous threats against MPs like me are a sign No 10 and Cummings are getting utterly brazen – Chuka Umunna.

Exeter University Liberal Democrats rock the ‘Lib Dem pointing’ look.

Husband of a Liberal Democrat MP apologises after accusing Labour MP Dawn Butler of lying.

Thank you for reading

If you enjoyed reading this, please do share the sign-up page with other people you know. Thank you!

And if you are looking for a speaker or trainer for a Liberal Democrat event, do get in touch.

Best wishes,


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