UK Politics

Lib Dem views: Will Nick Clegg survive?

Nick Clegg is not facing any leadership challenges at this year's Liberal Democrat conference - but will he still be in charge time next year? And how many MPs will the party have?


George Potter, Guildford

My guess is that it would be either Tim Farron or Danny Alexander. Personally, I would prefer Tim but I am not over the moon about either. With the best will in the world we are not going to have a fantastic election and I can't see how Nick Clegg could possibly stay in after any kind of battering, even if it's only a fairly mild one and also, to be fair, I think if he did try to stay there are enough people in the party who don't really want him as leader who are currently biting their tongues until after the election. There are plenty of people who - if he tried to stay on beyond the general election - would happily throw him out if he didn't want to leave on his own.

MPs prediction: If we got between 40 and 50 Nick Clegg might well be in a better position to stay. I don't think he could stay if we lost half of our MPs.


Joe Otten, Sheffield Hallam (Nick Clegg's constituency)

If we have a good result I think he'll stay. Anything better than current expectations.

MPs prediction: The polling on Lib Dem Voice says the median range is 30 to 46. It's possible he could stay with more than 30 [the party currently has 56 MPs].


Christine Wells, Huntingdonshire

I joined the party in 2010 specifically because of Nick Clegg. I thought he was the most fantastic thing. He showed great courage, commitment, self-sacrifice... A lot of people left the party but I was the other way round and I joined specifically for Nick Clegg on the grounds that -even back then - there were signs of mutiny and overthrow and that is why I joined the party - to have his back and be there in the event of any insurgency. If he were to go as leader then I would be gone as well. I wish there were an awful lot more like me out there.


George Cunningham, Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Thanet North

Nick Clegg will be leader. It's an unknown factor what's going to happen but I think he's a fine leader. He's done his very best and I think he should continue. But we will have to see how many seats are left and what the general mood of the party will be.

There is a certain irony [that first past-the-post-voting could save the party]. It's not a system we want at all but if the system serves the purpose of continuing to be a moderate party of the centre and helping moderate the extremities of other parties, I think first-past-the-post, we can be thankful for it, at least for the time being.

MPs prediction: It certainly won't be more seats but in terms of the losses, it can't be said for the time being, in an uncertain world.


Sheila Thomson, vice-chair Scottish Liberal Democrats

We have to wait and see what happens after the general election. I'm not making a comment.

MPs prediction: I hope in Scotland we will have as many as we have now. That we will still have 11 in Scotland.


Doris Maltin, Worthing and Adur

Nick Clegg is our leader. We want him to continue to be our leader. We think he is the right man for the job at the moment, definitely. I think he has done excellent work within the coalition. I am very happy for him to be our leader, certainly for the foreseeable future.