Lib Dem Leadership Contest Kicks Off

7 June 2019, 17:02

Jo Swinson and Sir Ed Davey
Jo Swinson and Sir Ed Davey. Picture: PA

While the Tory party leadership race has 11 hopefuls, the Lib Dems have announced the contest to replace Sir Vince Cable will be a battle between just two.

Jo Swinson and Sir Ed Davey are the only candidates in the contest for the Liberal Democrat leadership.

Members of the Lib Dem party will be able to vote from for their prefered choice of leader from July 1st.

Deputy leader Ms Swinson and former Cabinet minister Sir Ed will face a postal ballot of the party's membership, with the result due to be announced on July 23.

Party president Baroness Brinton said: "I am delighted at the calibre of our two candidates, whichever of them wins will be able to build on the remarkable achievements Vince Cable has led the Liberal Democrats to.

"We gained over 700 seats in May's local elections and then came second with over 20% of the vote share nationally in the European elections, electing 16 MEPs, our best ever result.

"The Liberal Democrats are the clear choice for people who want to live and work in a country which is outward looking, internationalist and celebrates our diversity.

"I look forward to seeing which of the two candidates will be the next leader of the Liberal Democrats and who will be taking us towards our goal of stopping Brexit and creating a more liberal society."

East Dunbartonshire MP Ms Swinson is the bookmakers' favourite in the race and has served as Sir Vince's deputy since June 2017.

Kingston and Surbiton MP Sir Ed served as energy secretary in the coalition government under David Cameron.