Monday, 21 July 2014

Nick Barlow talks about OMOV, and I respond....

The most cogent criticism of the OMOV proposals comes from people who don't accuse the team and I of being "leadership stooges" or that we are aiming to attack any wing of the party. 

One such person is Nick Barlow who has written this piece - I also asked him for further comment on twitter. 

Nick's main point is that by believing OMOV to be some kind of panacea, we miss the opportunity to reform party structures so as to encourage more participation in conference votes and elections to the Federal Policy Committee (FPC), Federal Conference Committee (FCC) and Federal Executive (FE). 

Nick says this on his blog:
"Various people – including me – who aren’t opposed to widening the electoral franchise or changing the way Conference works have pointed out that there are various flaws with the current proposals, and in return the response has come that we clearly don’t support the idea at all, and that if there are problems then we should support the proposal as it is and look to fix them afterwards."
 My response is that Nick and I don't disagree on that much, and I don't think that he doesn't support OMOV at all. I think the disagreement comes on which order this can be done in.

I think it's better to do the fundamental change first - and also that the need to put this to conference and have it voted on - means that it must be as clear a change as possible.

To change the transparency of the committees, which is a charge others have raised, I think that needs to be tackled separately. I'm happy to go on record saying that is something that should be campaigned for after this change, as I do think you need to do changes in an incremental fashion, having had some experience in change management in my professional life.

Thanks again to Nick tho, for engaging with the actual argument rather than supposing my genuine motivations to provide a better membership experience are actually a front for achieving the leadership agenda.