Norman Lamb announces bid for Lib Dem leadership
Former Lib Dem health minister Norman Lamb has officially announced his bid to lead the party.
The MP for Norfolk North announced that he would run to become Liberal Democrat leader yesterday, saying he had “never shrunk away from a challenge”.
Saying he thought peoples’ trust in the party had been “undermined” in recent years, he said he wanted to restore it.
Mr Lamb held his seat with a majority of 4,043, and described the election as “absolutely punishing” for the party, which lost dozens of seats.
Former Lib Dem president Tim Farron is also expected to announce a bid to become leader.
After several days of soul searching Mr Lamb said he decided to run, saying: “obviously the party suffered devastating results last Thursday. It’s critically important that we reconnect and… have an effective advocate for what modern liberalism is all about.”
He continued: “As health minister I put body and soul into it and I would do the same for this job.”
When the Lib Dem health minister, Mr Lamb was pushed to address the problem of “gay cure” therapies. He said it was “utterly abhorrent” but that the Department of Health was not aware of cases of it being prescribed on the NHS.
Mr Lamb has a strong voting record on LGBT issues including same-sex marriage and to repeal Section 28.
Nick Clegg quit as Lib Dem leader last Friday after disastrous results in the general election leaving the party with just eight seats.
He held onto his Sheffield Hallam seat in the 2015 general election, but after a few hours stepped down as party leader, celebrating same-sex marriage as one of his proudest achievements.