The predicament of the Lib Dems is summed up by the media coverage, or lack thereof, of their conference. Looking at the papers today, the Lib Dem conference seems to be about, at best, the fourth item on the news agenda. The worrying thing for the Lib Dems is that this isn’t likely to change as the week goes on. It is hard to see Northern Rock shifting from the front pages and if it does there is bound to be another twist in the McCann saga to capture public attention.
Perhaps, though, the audience for the conferences isn’t the general public. As Sam Coates points out, the Lib Dems are essentially running their version of a core vote conference; majoring on their plans to make Britain a zero carbon economy by 2050 and to ‘hammer’ the rich on tax. It’s a pity as the Lib Dems could be being bold on public services and giving the two main parties a much needed shove on both the localism and personalisation agendas. But I guess the Lib Dems have decided that the future isn’t orange after all.