Friday, January 13, 2006


Hemming Uses Withdrawal Method

Shock swept throughout the political world today, as the frontrunner in the Liberal Democrat leadership contest formally withdrew from the race to replace Charles Kennedy.

In a statement released this afternoon, John Hemming announced:

"I now have the final results from the opinion poll on the Lib Dem Leadership Election.

There were a large number of questions asked in the poll, but I particularly needed to know whether or not I should progress my candidature given that we now have a contest.

A large number of people contacted me directly to support my campaign and expressed a view that they preferred me to the other potential candidates.

I initially declared as a candidate to ensure that there would be a contest. The good news is that 64% of members think I was right to do this. 27% think not and the rest don't know. However, only 14% of members believe I have the right experience to lead the party (70% do not). That does not surprise me as I have always been marginal about this. A few more years experience is really needed in parliament. As a consequence 58% of members believe that I should withdraw.

The good news for me is that 31% of members believe that I should continue to fight a campaign and that in a final election (of those who have decided what to do) I would get 8% of the vote. That bodes well for a future election campaign. Three of the four candidates in this election are, in fact, older than me.

Clearly, however, the members believe that I should withdraw from this election. This, therefore, shows that members back my decision to not further my candidature... this time.

I would like to thank those people who supported my campaign (even those who did it 'tongue in cheek'). It has been a fun campaign so far, but now is the end of this particular campaign."

We are obviously disappointed that John has decided to withdraw his candidature, although this disappointment is tempered by John's smart refusal to rule out entering future leadership contests.

In the meantime, however, we are sure that whichever of the remaining four candidates - Sir Menzies Campbell, Simon Hughes, Chris Huhne and Mark Oaten - wins the leadership contest will offer John a suitably high-profile position in his frontbench team.

John Hemming for prominent Liberal Democrat frontbench role - you know it makes sense!


EXCLUSIVE: Statement from John Hemming

Last night, we contacted John Hemming following unsubstantiated rumours sweeping the internet that he had withdrawn from the Liberal Democrat leadership race, and we insisted that he owed it to his army of supporters to call a press conference to categorically deny that this is the case.

In response, John emailed with the following exclusive statement:

"I expect to have the final results from the Yougov poll later today at which point I will make a final announcement about the campaign.

Thanks for the work you have done I have found it quite entertaining and I thank you particularly for removing supporters surnames. If I stand I stand as a serious candidate - with serious objectives. I do think politics should not be boring, however."

So there you have it, John has not withdrawn from the leadership race, and rightly so in our opinion.

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

Thursday, January 12, 2006


The Case For Hemming #2: Experience

Doubting Thomases seeking to put the mockers on John Hemming's leadership bid have often cited 'lack of experience' as a reason why John should not become the next Liberal Democrat leader.

This is an incredibly bizarre assertion, which flies in the face of the stark truth that John has amassed a wealth of political experience, dating back over two decades in which John has sought, and won, election to a wide variety of political offices.

John's political career started in his university days, when he was a Mercian Nationalist, and in 1978, he achieved his first political success when he was elected as the Women's Representative onto the Junior Common Room - an early sign of his keen interest in female affairs.

This early success whetted John's appetite for politics, and in 1979, he sought election to two positions - Policy Convenor of Magdalen College and Secretary of the Oxford University Students' Union - with mixed success.

John's bid to become Policy Convenor of Magdalen College exceeded all expectations as he was ultimately triumphant, but unfortunately, this success was not matched by his bid to become Secretary of the Oxford University Students' Union, where John was beaten by candidates from the Conservatives and Labour, as well as the representative of the Silly Party, which turned out to be a dog.

A lesser man than John would have allowed his political career to grind to a halt after such a humiliating setback, but John's went from strength to strength, and in 1980, he was elected to Oxford University's National Union of Students delegation, running on the Mercian Nationalist ticket.

After leaving university, John defected from the Mercian Nationalists to the Liberals, a move which was not linked to the failure of the Mercian Nationalists to make a committed manifesto pledge to change the name of the capital, Birmingham, to Hemmingrad when they achieved their goal of unilateral Mercian independence.

At the age of just 23, John was the Liberals' youngest candidate in the 1983 General Election, when he achieved a respectable third place in Birmingham Hall Green, with 23.6% (almost a quarter!) of all votes cast!

John also finished third in Birmingham Small Heath in 1987, in the face of a strong challenge from candidates from the Green and Communist parties.

In 1992, John contested his spiritual political home, Birmingham Yardley, in a General Election for the first time, and thirteen years later in 2005, he was finally elected as a Member of Parliament at the fourth attempt in Yardley and his sixth time of trying overall, making him the first Liberal/Liberal Democrat to be elected to parliament to represent a Birmingham constituency since 1969.

In the meantime, John had forged a glittering career in local government, after first being elected as a councillor on Birmingham City Council in 1990, at the tender age of 30.

During his time in local government, John has notched up many notable achievements, but the unquestionable highlight was obviously when, as leader of the Liberal Democrat grouping on Birmingham City Council, he secured a position worthy of his considerable talent, Deputy Council Leader, by forging an alliance with the Conservatives to form a controlling coalition (a possible forerunner to a Prime Minister Hemming/Deputy PM Cameron coalition perhaps?).

As you can see, far from being a man with negligible political experience, John Hemming is a man whose political career has been both broad and extensive, so why should the fact that he has only spent eight months as a Member of Parliament hold him back?

Stick two fingers up to the political establishment who seek to hold back the advance of John with their pernicious remarks about 'lack of experience' and declare your support by emailing without delay!

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!


Media Update

There were no signs of the media frenzy surrounding John Hemming's leadership bid abating today, as the Daily Telegraph's political editor George Jones breathlessly announced:

"It emerged last night that John Hemming, a back-bench MP considered... for the leadership, has commissioned an opinion poll of party members into whether he has any support."

You can also voice your support for John by emailing without delay!

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

UPDATE: John's leadership bid also received prominent coverage in the Guardian today. For the third day in a row, diarist Hugh Muir lent his support to John's campaign, declaring:

"Lib Dems are becoming excited about John Hemming, the member for Birmingham Yardley and our chosen candidate for the party's leadership. Victory is not yet assured but we are quietly confident."


John Hemming - Magnanimous... Or Strategic Genius?

Supporters of John Hemming gained a valuable insight into the character of the man today, as he revealed that he had signed nomination papers for his struggling leadership rival Mark Oaten, and would be prepared to do so for Simon Hughes and Chris Huhne as well.

At first sight, John's support for his rivals might seem baffling, but we believe it speaks volumes about the magnanimity of the man and reflects his genuine desire for him to be seen to become leader by contest, not coronation.

At the same time, it reveals that John is a masterful tactician, as his cunning plan to prop up his ailing rivals in order to split the 'stop Hemming' vote is an unparalleled stroke of strategic genius.

Rest assured that John is still collecting support from his adoring public, and you can voice your support by emailing without delay!

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


Make Money On Hemming

We don't know whether they're being ridiculously generous, or taking an insane risk, or are just genuinely oblivious to the menacing presence of John Hemming in this leadership contest, but for some reason, the bookmakers and online betting markets are offering remarkably long odds on John being the next Liberal Democrat leader.

At the time of writing, the Betfair betting exchange, was offering odds of 299/1 (no, that's not a typing error, John really is priced at 299/1!) on John, which is enough to make anybody sit up and take notice!

It can only be a matter of time before this oversight is corrected and the odds change significantly to reflect the true chance of John becoming the next leader, so we encourage all our readers to fill their boots while they can!

But don't forget - John can only fulfil his destiny and become Liberal Democrat leader with your support, which you can demonstrate by emailing without delay!

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


The Case For Hemming #1: Intelligence

Despite John Hemming being the obvious choice to lead the Liberal Democrats, it seems many of his parliamentary colleagues are reluctant to jump on the bandwagon - but you can climb aboard by simply emailing and declaring your support today!

In order to remind them why this formidable political operator of towering stature is the ideal candidate for the Liberal Democrat leadership, we'll be presenting a breakdown of John's qualifications for the job over the days ahead - first up, his supreme intellect...

John was educated at the prestigious King Edward's School, Edgbaston, Birmingham and his glittering academic career commenced right there, when his hard-fought victory against all-comers in the Rickard Prize for Arithmetic provided the catalyst for what was to follow.

John left King Edward's after gaining ten O Levels and three A Levels (all at grade A!), which helped to earn him a National Sciences scholarship (worth £60 and which afforded him a longer gown than his contemporaries) to study Atomic, Nuclear and Theoretical Physics at Magdalen College, Oxford.

It is a little-known fact that John's record of academic excellence in the field of physics saw him become a candidate to be Britain's first astronaut, but despite John's obvious qualifications for being a space cadet, he was, unfortunately, not sent into space, and the role was taken by Michael Foale instead.

The Yardley Liberal Democrats' website tells us that:

"His technical skills lie particularly in the areas of mathematics and programming.

He is an accomplished cryptographer having devised a number of security and payment protocols.

He was the first person outside the USA to implement the main SSL World Wide Web security protocol.

He is one of the world's leading internet technical experts.

He programs in eight different programming languages as well as speaking six human languages."

As well as being a cunning linguist, John is also a highly-accomplished musician; having formerly been a drummer in a heavy metal rock group, he is currently a jazz pianist, and has performed with such luminaries as Andy Hamilton and the Blue Notes and the John Patrick Quartet.

Surveying the above, it should be clear to anybody that John Hemming is a man of unsurpassable intellect and many talents, who could not fail to lead the Liberal Democrats to unprecedented and unimagined performance levels in future elections.

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!


More Support Flooding In

In the previous post, we mentioned that this blog has been experiencing technical problems today, which we believe may possibly be linked to the literally overwhelming response we've had in support of John Hemming's leadership campaign.

William, from London, was the latest to email to declare his support today, and anybody who shares his, and our, view that John is the ideal candidate for the Liberal Democrat leadership is urged most strongly to do the same!

In addition to the emails we've received, the blog has also attracted 23 messages, over double the number we had yesterday!

Here's a selection of the further expressions of support we've received since yesterday:

"Long live the Liberal Party (led by John Hemming). I can't wait to see a return to the good old days."

"This is a man that is clearly destined for glory. First stop leader of the Lib Dems, next PM!!"

"I am shocked by the lack of publicity for Hemming. He has as much of a chance as Sir Ming, Oaten or Hughes."

"The women of Britain, up and down the length and breadth of the land, are shuddering in anticipation of The Coming of John 'Brummie Sex God' Hemming. How will they ever resist his manly musk?"

"Bill Clinton has got nothing when compared to to the up-standing member from Yardley."

"JH is exactly the person I want as leader of the Lib Dems. Don't be a lemming, jump for Hemming!"

"Clearly one of the most significant politicians of the day."

"JH is the man."

"Your site has persuaded me."

With such a clamour of support for John from the public, there's only one thing we have to add...

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!


Media Interest Continues To Grow

John Hemming's ever-growing army of supporters will be delighted at signs today that the mass media is finally being forced to acknowledge John's increasing impact on the Liberal Democrat leadership contest.

Following on from the BBC and the Birmingham Mail yesterday, the Mirror's political correspondent, urging readers to 'vote Libido Dem', was among the first to break ranks from the coverage blackout of John's leadership bid being perpetrated by John's jealous rivals and their media conspirators, reporting that:

"John Hemming was a shock entrant yesterday in the Lib Dem leadership race.

And the married MP, 45, who has fathered a love-child and had at least 26 affairs, claimed his campaign was off to a "flying start".

He said he had the backing of two MPs and a number of constituency associations.

Fellow MPs were astonished to receive an email asking for their support."

These emails clearly demonstrate that John is determined to adopt a proactive approach to his leadership campaign, and his supporters will be pleased that he won't be complacently resting on his laurels.

Speaking of emails, don't forget to voice your support for John's leadership bid by emailing without delay!

George Jones, political editor of the Daily Telegraph, was also keen to inform his readers about John's campaign:

"In a surprise move, the little-known backbencher John Hemming, who was only elected to Parliament eight months ago, said he would consider running..."

Meanwhile, elsewhere in the Telegraph, Sophie Brodie's Business Diary, offered even more information about John:

"Colourful Lib Dem MP and entrepreneur John Hemming has been quick to throw his hat into the ring as a potential candidate for party leader.

Hours before Charles Kennedy resigned on Saturday and Sir Menzies Campbell reversed into his leadership bid, Hemming was already merrily chatting about standing.

On his website, he wrote: "If Charles Kennedy wins the leadership election [in which Campbell refused to stand] then I will work with him if he asks me to.

"If, however, I win the leadership election (whether or not Charles pulls out), I will invite him to join my shadow cabinet."

Alongside this generous offer, Hemming sympathised with Kennedy, noting: "Winston Churchill was known to be drunk on many occasions, but people recognise his merits as a leader"."

Over at the Guardian, their political correspondent Tania Branigan was eager to join the chorus of commentators spreading the word about John:

"John Hemming, the MP elected for Birmingham Yardley in May, said he was contemplating standing..."

Her colleague, diarist Hugh Muir, had even more to say:

"We much prefer the claims of John Hemming, the Midlands businessman who would fashion a bold new party using his eight months' experience as a Commons backbencher.

Yesterday on his weblog he reported that nominations for him are flooding in, and little wonder.

Who could resist the claims of a man who, while married with three children, fathered a child with his researcher, thus providing voters with political leadership and soap opera all at the same time."

With the mass media finally giving John's campaign the attention it deserves, the bid to ensure the Liberal Democrats get the leader they deserve can only go from strength to strength!

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

PS Apologies if this post seems incoherent - the blog has been plagued by technical problems all day, causing the original draft of this post to be lost and re-written rather hastily!

Monday, January 09, 2006


Restricted Poll Casts Doubt On Rivals' Prospects

A rather restricted poll in today's Daily Telegraph would have made rather worrying reading for two of John Hemming's rivals for the Liberal Democrat leadership.

As part of the myth being propagated by John's jealous rivals and disseminated by their conspirators in the mass media that there are only three contenders in this race, the poll asked Liberal Democrat voters which of Sir Menzies Campbell, Simon Hughes and Mark Oaten should be Charles Kennedy's successor.

The results would have been disappointing for all three men. 26% backed Campbell, 20% backed Hughes, and only a paltry 8% backed Oaten, with a further 47% saying 'don't know', clearly irked at being denied the opportunity to back the man who is the ideal candidate for the Liberal Democrat leadership, namely John Hemming.

These people should rest assured that they can voice their support for John by emailing, and thereby defy the continuing media blackout.

The poll also asked Liberal Democrat members who should succeed Charles Kennedy, and Hughes and Oaten could only muster 34% between them, making one thing absolutely clear - only John Hemming has the ability, popularity, credibility and gravitas to take the fight to Campbell and win.

John Hemming for Liberal Democrat leader - you know it makes sense!

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