The Democratic Party is encouraging younger members to run for chairman in elections in December in order to rejuvenate the party, its acting chairwoman says. That was the consensus among some 60 party members at a brainstorming meeting yesterday, veteran lawmaker Emily Lau Wai-hing said. "All new faces in the party, regardless of gender, should consider joining the race for a leadership role," Lau said. Democrats have been calling for a new lease of life to be injected into the party after it suffered a big setback in the Legislative Council election last month. The party lost two of its three New Territories East seats, and support in the constituency plunged 42.8 per cent to 68,185 votes. Albert Ho Chun-yan stepped down as chairman to take responsibility. Newly elected legislator Helena Wong Pik-wan and Southern district councillor Lo Kin-hei, both of whom are seen as being part of the Democrats' promising "second ladder", said they had not given much thought to the top position. "I am a new lawmaker and there is still a lot to be learned," Wong said. Sha Tin district councillor Richard Tsoi Yiu-cheong, who is a veteran politician but has been a Democrat for only about a year, said he would consider any position that could best serve the party. Lau said the party's decision to negotiate with the central government's liaison office and its support of the government's 2010 electoral reforms were only partly to blame for its failure at the ballot box. A crucial factor was the inadequacy of the party's efforts to explain its moves to the public, she said.