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Liberal Democrats deputy leadership election, 2015

Template:Infobox Election The 2015 Liberal Democrats deputy leadership election began on 8 May 2015, the incumbent Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Malcom Bruce, having stepped down as a Member of Parliament and not stood at the General Election on 7 May. No date has been set for this election but, after the resignation of Nick Clegg as Leader of the Liberal Democrats on 8 May 2015, it has been speculated that an election will be held quickly, before the first sitting of the new Parliament.[1]

In the absence of a Deputy Leader, the President of the Liberal Democrats Baroness Sal Brinton is the de facto acting leader.

Election rules

Current rules

Under current rules, the Deputy Leader is elected by a from the party's 8 Members of Parliament in the House of Commons and is officially known as the "Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party". In the absence of an elected Leader of the Party, the role of the Deputy Leader is to lead for the Liberal Democrats in the House of Commons.

Proposal for change

On 15 May 2015, leadership candidate Norman Lamb MP proposed a change to the rules that would mean that the Deputy Leader is elected by all Party members on a one member one vote basis, with the explicit purpose of ensuring that the deputy leader is a woman.

In proposing this change on Party members' website Liberal Democrat Voice, Mr Lamb wrote: "Consequently, as leader I will immediately propose to the federal executive that we should move to elect a Deputy Leader who is not required to be a member of the House of Commons, but who will play a major role as one of the party’s leading voices and campaigners. She could be one of the former or future colleagues mentioned below; a peer, a member of a devolved chamber or the European Parliament; a leading councillor or seasoned campaigner."[2]