There's a fascinating interview with Brian Paddick in the Telegraph today. I can't quite decide how credible a candidate for London Mayor he will be. On the one hand he's very adept at getting publicity, something a LibDem candidate often finds difficult. But on the other hand, like his old boss Sir Ian Blair, Paddick seems to have a character flaw which enables him to hit the self destruct button rather too easily.
There is no doubt that Paddick will be the strongest LibDem challenger yet, but it will be interesting to see whether he targets Boris or Ken Livingstone in his attacks. From a Tory viewpoint, Boris needs to mop up Paddick's second preferences in order to sweep past Livingstone in the second round, so expect Boris to make some gentle wooing noises to Paddick and his supporters as the election draws nearer.
Much has been written about Boris's alleged inactivity in recent weeks. The news section of his website has had one entry since the end of September. There hasn't been a press release posted since his campaign launch in early September. It is not suprising that eyebrows are being raised.
A candidate for a very visible position like this does need to maintain some sort of consistent profile, but the period between now and Christmas should be spent becoming an authority on the issues. The campaign won't get going until January, so there doesn't need to be a constant stream of media and policy announcements at the moment. But with Paddick now in the field, Boris will certainly need to become rather more visible than he has been up to now.