We were discussing membership structure proposals at today's meeting of the ALDE Financial Advisory Committee - naturally, I cannot discuss specifics as everything is still at the proposal stage, and the relevant bodies are yet to be informed - but as we discussed them, and the implications, it dawned on me that they presented an opportunity to reach out to those parties who, for various reasons, find it hard to pay affiliation fees and therefore opt for a more limited form of membership.
And so, I offered up a suggestion which, I hope, will make it easier for smaller parties, from places where politics is difficult, to engage with the rest of us. It does involve some expenditure on the part of the ALDE Party, but I see it as an investment in building a bigger, more diverse, European liberal family, and, given the support of the Treasurer and, I believe, the Secretariat, it is a decided possibility.
As I said, it isn't a big thing, but it is the ability to make a contribution which makes my position as a member of ALDE's Council so worthwhile - a place where process and careful analysis take precedence over grand politics and the expression of ideas.
What that means is that, unlike my usual diffident approach to elections - it would be nice to win, but it isn't the be all and end all - this one is different. I would really like to be re-elected this year to another two-year term, so I'll be campaigning somewhat harder than I have in the past, on a platform of vorsprung durch verwaltung - progress through administration.
You see, I believe that political parties have a duty to run themselves efficiently, as their internal workings are a window into the way they believe politics should be done. They should also wear their principles on their sleeves, because if they don't, why should a voter have any faith that, in power, they would be true to them?
It is that spirit that I bring to my work, and whilst virtue is apparently its own reward, the recognition that re-election represents would be even better...