Caroline Lucas has been elected as the first ever leader of the Green Party of England and Wales. I voted for Caroline and I wish her every success in the job. I believe that she has got the ability and integrity to make a good leader for the Party.
But she is going to have to be tough. When it was suggested (this time around) that the GP elect a leader I thought twice about it. Why? Because I know that the media agenda will be to neutralise the GP's radical programme of reform by making the GP conform to the neoliberal agenda that every other mainstream party has adopted.
That means that our leader will come under great pressure to act and behave as every other leader does, and that isn't what the GP is about. They will also shine a spotlight into her private life in an attempt to rake up anything they can use to discredit her. They are probably sifting through her (recycled) rubbish as I write this.
The Party agreed, if I recall correctly, that we would have an elected leader for a two year term. There will obviously be pressure to increase this into a 'permanent' leadership position - so that the GP leader will become an elected dictator. The media like such 'strong' leaders because once they are 'onside' there is little the rest of the party can do to change anything - remember Tony? We have to make sure we resist these pressures. If we don't the GP will become like all the other parties - and then it won't be worth voting for.