What we have is a gender and a generational divide
There’s a YouGov poll in the Times this morning in which there’s the first detailed questioning on whether Lord Rennard he should be allowed to stay with the Lib Dems or leave following the allegations of sexual harassment
According to the paper’s report 40% said he should stay and 39% said he should leave. Among women, the split was 43% leave with only 27% saying he should stay.
Amongst Lib Dems voters, where the sample size is probably too small to do a gender split, 32% said he should â€œremain in the Liberal Democrats as it has not been proved that heâ€™s done anything wrongâ€, while 47% believed that he should leave because â€œhe is damaging the wider organisationâ€.
So Clegg’s actions yesterday appear to be in line with Lib Dem voters specifically and women generally
The full dataset is not yet available but my guess is that the older age groups will be more supportive of the peer than younger ones.
Given that the cohort of Lib Dem peers is much more male than female and also much older than the adult population as a whole then the polling highlights the challenge facing the party in dealing with such a sensitive issue.