Today I got two bits of very welcome news- one of them was expected but the other was a delightful surprise.
The first bit of good news was that the amendment Sophie Bridger and I have written to the ESA motion was submitted to the Federal Conference Committee today by Guildford Liberal Democrats who are kindly sponsoring it. This now means that the FCC will formally consider whether to allow the amendment to be placed on the agenda for the debate on the original motion itself. Under the circumstances, I can't see any grounds for blocking a debate on an amendment so that stage should be something of a formality.
For those interested, here's what the motion would look like if the amendment were passed by conference.
The other bit of good news is that another amendment to the motion has been submitted. I knew nothing about this one until today but it seems to have almost identical intentions to the amendment Sophie and I have written. Now, this does mean that the two amendments could potentially clash with each other, so I'm speaking to the people behind the other amendment to try and resolve the situation, but the great thing is that other people cared enough about the motion to try and strengthen it with an amendment. And the truly awesome part is that one of the people behind the other amendment is Dr Evan Harris, a former Lib Dem MP and all round good guy who has been incredibly effective at fighting the bad things the tories have been trying to do in the coalition such as the NHS reforms. And, given that he's behind the amendment, then he must also support the motion as well! As such, this means that we finally have a "big beast" on our side - exactly the kind of thing that greatly strengthens the chance of a motion being passed!