Lib Dems are pointless says their own MP

Apr 12, 2014

Nick Clegg has pandered to detractors, adds Jeremy Browne

Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

THE Liberal Democrats are pointless – says one of the party’s most senior MPs. In a highly embarrassing moment for leader Nick Clegg, Jeremy Browne says voters cannot be blamed for abandoning the party.

“Every political party and every politician has to be able to answer the question: if you didn’t exist why would it be necessary to invent you?” he tells The Times. “I’m not sure it would be necessary to invent an ill-defined moderating centrist party.”

He accused leader Nick Clegg of pandering to the party’s left wing. “I think Nick Clegg is a natural liberal but I think by meeting his detractors half way — who are not as at ease with an authentic liberalism as I think he naturally is — he has blurred his distinctiveness,” says the MP

Browne argues that people “will feel” that Clegg has “moved away from some of his own instincts”. He adds: “Maybe I’m a more defiantly loyal ­supporter of Nick Clegg than Nick Clegg is of himself.”

The stinging attack comes little more than a month before local and European elections in which analysts believe the Liberal Democrats could be pushed into fourth place.

With an online poll putting Clegg’s party on 11% yesterday, down from 28% at the last European and local polling, the Lib Dems could lose all 12 of its MEPs.

Sign up for our daily newsletter