The Oldham and Saddlesworth by-election result was certainly not the Lib Dem capitulation that the media were envisaging only last weekend.
An ICM for Mail on Sunday poll scored: Labour 44%, Lib Dem 27%, Conservative 18%
Meanwhile, a Populus for Sunday Telegraph poll scored: Labour 46%, Lib Dem 29%, Conservative 15%
There was even talk of the Tories moving into second and the Lib Dems collapsing to 3rd to measure the similar low figures that we've been scoring in the national opinion polls recently.
A good 2nd place
In fact, the final result on a 48% turnout was: Labour 42.1%, Lib Dems 31.9%, Conservative 12.8%. A Labour HOLD then with a Majority of 3558.
In the annulled general election result last May, the Lib Dems scored 31.6% of the vote. So despite the scare-mongering and the doom-laden forecasts of recent days, and despite the difficult decisions that have been made as part of a responsible government, we managed to hold onto our % of the vote - indeed, increase it marginally.
The story then is not of a Lib Dem haemorrhage but of a Conservative collapse. They lost over 7,000 votes and over 13% of their vote.
So worry ye not. These are challenging times for the Liberal Democrats, but the Liberal Democrats, as proven when we made the decision to go into government last May to put right Labour's failures, are up for a challenge.
Well done to Elwyn and to the team for a spirited campaign.
This Liberal Democrat will go to sleep soundly in the knowledge that that there's still plenty of life in that old bird yet.
Mark Twain would be proud.