The race looks all over before it starts
After PB’s overnight guest slot on the LD leadership there’s been a big move in that the heavily tipped Oxford West & Abingdon MP, Layla Moran, has withdrawn from the race.
So the attention now turns to Jo Swinson who decided not to stand two years ago because she had a very young child to care for. She was made deputy to Cable and has been seen a lot more in the media. On local election night I thought she performed well as the LD panelist of politicians sitting next to Labour’s Barry Gardiner.
It is hard now to see anyone at all competing with Swinson and winning. The former cabinet minister, Ed Davey, is now 12% in the betting and the only other movement is Christine Jardine who won Edinburgh West of the SNP at the 2017 general election.
According to the Evening Standard which broke the story her decision has nothing to do with the controversy when she admitted to facing charges which were dropped in a 2013 incident at the Party Conference in Glasgow.
She says that as a relatively new MP her first priority has to be to serve her constituents to the best of her ability. At the general election she unseated the Conservatives incumbent by a majority of just 816 and clearly there is an element of wanting to ensure that she can get returned again.
It is thought that Vince Cable will step down after the Euros next week thus triggering the contest which is by postal ballot of the entire membership.