Chris Huhne's speech to the Lib Dem federal conference this morning was a cracker and got him a deserved standing ovation.
Much of the speech was outlining the Lib Dem approach to cutting crime. He attacked the Tories and Labour for their willingness to go for gimmicks which are either ineffective or counter-productive, and instead called for solutions based on evidence of what really works in cutting crime.
He also highlighted what he called the 'punishment posturing' which both Tories and Labour indulge in, in which they compete with each other to come up with ever greater punishments for crime. Instead, Chris said that the key things which matter in terms of cutting crime are improving detection and catching criminals, rather than the sentences handed out at the end of the process. He also pointed out how ineffective prison can be in terms of cutting re-offending.
The speech wasn't just about crime, though. He also attacked the other parties for their record on things such as social justice and green issues.
The delivery was also impressive. Chris was roaming about the stage and speaking with real passion, something which he was sometimes accused of lacking during the leadership election campaign last year.
All in all, 10 out of 10 for this speech. I just hope that Nick Clegg will be equally impressive when he gives his keynote speech tomorrow.
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