Losing Lib Dem warns Nick Clegg he’s not an asset

Nick Clegg. Picture: PA
Nick Clegg. Picture: PA
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FORMER Lib Dem MP Sandra Gidley, who failed to get elected in Hampshire, last night warned party leader Nick Clegg that he needed to listen to what party activists were saying.

While she did not believe he should go “at the moment”, she said that he had not been an asset when it came to campaigning on the doorstep.

“One person mentioned Nick Clegg in a positive light but the rest of the comments were negative. People were saying to me ‘Your leader is not helping your party’,” she said. “I don’t think Nick should go at the moment. That’s up to the party. It’s up to Nick to listen.”

Responding to the local election results, Mr Clegg said: “I have always said it is understandable why it is that people might be attracted to the simple answers that the UK Independence Party is offering to deal with this country’s complex problems.

“But I do not think they do have the answers to the dilemmas we face as a country.

“I believe that the Liberal Democrats do. I believe that our message that we need to build a stronger economy and do so as fairly as possible, enabling everyone to get on in life, is the right message for the future.

“Of course, it is not good to lose hard-working councillors, as we have done in these elections, but the Liberal Democrats are on a journey.

“We are on a journey from a party of protest to a party of government and actually the pattern that has emerged from the results overnight shows that, where we have MPs, where we have Liberal Democrats out on the doorstep setting out our side to the story, communicating our message, we are holding our own and in some areas making gains.”

He added: “By-elections always are as uneven as this. Just a few weeks ago we won a spectacular by-election in Eastleigh.”