Video of Vince Cable’s most memorable moment from when he was the acting Lib Dem Leader in 2007
Today’s Sunday Times reports
VINCE CABLE, the business secretary, is being tipped by senior Liberal Democrats as the partyâ€™s next leader if Nick Clegg loses his seat or resigns after a poor result in the general election.
Cable, 71, who had all but ruled himself out of any leadership contest, is now being promoted by senior Lib Dems as a â€œsafe pair of handsâ€ who can steer the party into a coalition with either Labour or the Tories.
Given a few weeks ago, he very publicly criticised Â Tim Farron, the favourite to succeed Nick Clegg, this is what he said.
â€œI mean, heâ€™s [Farron] a very good campaigning MP, but heâ€™s never been in government and has never had to make difficult decisions and I think his credibility isnâ€™t great.Â You know, heâ€™s an entertaining speaker and has a bit of a fan club. But I suspect he would not be seen as a very credible leader, at least now. Maybe in five, 10 years time, things are different.â€
You do have to wonder if Cable was on manoeuvres, there’s been polls from several pollsters showing Clegg is on course to lose Sheffield Hallam, and it would be remiss of Vince Cable not to be doing some planning on the leadership front.
If the Liberal Democrat do as badly as some expect and their leader loses his seat and other heavyweights have lost their seats or have stood down, then Vince suddenly becomes the most experienced MP in the party as he’s been in government for the last five years, something Farron has not experienced.
The line of “this is no time for a novice”, might get an airing, especially if the Lib Dems are in negotiations to enter a new coalition with either Labour or the Tories.
Some might say Vince Cable’s age might be a barrier to becoming leader, he is 72 next month, but he could point out, that the favourite to be the next President of the United States of America, is only four years younger than him, and she’ll be 69 when she takes office.
Vince Cable is Â currently 8/1 with several bookmakersÂ to be the next Lib Dem leader.