UK Politics

Tim Farron 'not aiming to be Lib Dem leader'

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Media captionTim Farron explains why "divorce" from the Conservatives is inevitable

Liberal Democrat president Tim Farron has said he has "no ambition" to lead the party.

Some have suggested Mr Farron is lining himself up as Nick Clegg's successor after a headline-grabbing speech to the party conference on Sunday.

But he told BBC2's Daily Politics he would refuse the top job if it was offered to him.

He also told Channel 4 News that if Mr Clegg wanted to quit, he would "nail his feet to the floor".

The Westmorland and Lonsdale MP, who is not a member of government, launched an outspoken attack on the Conservatives in his speech on Sunday.

He told delegates in Birmingham the Tories would be "an absolute nightmare" if governing alone and attacked their policies on tax and the riots.

He also said it was inevitable the coalition "will end in divorce".

'Deserves support'

When he was asked whether he was positioning himself to take over the Lib Dem leadership, he told the BBC: "I have no such ambition."

Pressed on whether he would accept the job if it was offered, he said "certainly not". Asked again if that meant he would refuse it, he responded: "Yes. It is not going to come up. Nick Clegg is doing a brilliant job.

"Not only is Nick Clegg doing a great job, but he is also a mate and somebody who deserves support."

Mr Farron stood for the deputy leadership of his party last year, but lost to Simon Hughes.

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