Vince Cable announces he will step down as Liberal Democrats leader after “Brexit is resolved”

Friday, September 7, 2018

The Liberal Democrats leader Vince Cable has announced he will be stepping down but not until Brexit “is resolved".

Sir Vince Cable did not offer a timescale only saying: “once Brexit is resolved or stopped and once the new rules are agreed that will be the chance for a leadership election.”

Announcing his resignation in a speech on Friday, Sir Vince Cable, aged 75, outlined a series of reforms to membership rules aimed at attracting younger voters.

Liberal Democrat membership rules will be overhauled to all moderates outside the party to help choose the next leader, he said.

He said: "We should widen membership with a new class of supporters who pay nothing to sign up to the party's values.

"They should enjoy a range of entitlements, including the right to vote for the leadership and to shape the party's campaigning online.

"The Liberal Democrats already have an army of voluntary helpers and deliverers, as well as 200,000 online supporters, who loosely identify with us and campaign with us, but currently have no say in the direction of the party."

 

‘A movement of moderates’

The speech comes ahead of the party’s annual conference, which begins on September 15.

Sir Vince added: "The Liberal Democrats are not a socialist party concerned with extreme-left entryism or a right-wing party trying to keep out extreme right-wingers.

"We are a centre-ground, pro-European, liberal and social democratic party, welcoming like-minded supporters.

"This will be a movement for moderates."

The Liberal  Democrats have struggled electorally since going into government in coalition with the Conservatives in 2010.

As of August 2018, the party had a membership of 99,200.