Taking into account that it is harder to be interviewed down the line and that Andrew Neil seems to enjoy needling Tim, it was still a poor performance.
In particular, Tim must have known he would be challenged during the leadership contest on his record on equal marriage.
He really should have worked out a reply that did not lead to his having to apologise to Peter Tatchell.
If Tim has changed his mind on the question then he should say so. There is no shame in changing your mind.
In fact, given that equal marriage was not even on the horizon 20 years ago and is now so widely supported, pretty much everyone has changed his or her mind on the question.
On a happier note, Tim's speech to the Gladstone Club was very good:
We’ve fallen into a style of fighting elections which relied on identifying ourselves as the main challenger to whoever held the seat, and then mobilising local grievances to convince the voters that we were on their side, whatever they thought and whether or not they were remotely Liberal in their beliefs.
"What we actually stood for and believed was almost irrelevant, except during atypical periods such as the war in Iraq – with the result that while the electorate began to recognise a few things we were against – the Iraq war, tuition fees, cuts in local services – they hadn’t the faintest clue of what we were for."I don't know what Tim's solution is, but as a definition of the problem we face this is spot on.