But, who is next?
In the last hour one of my old bosses, Vince Cable has stood down as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats in order to concentrate on his role as Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills within the Liberal Democrat - Conservative coalition government.
I am delighted that Vince has got such a major role within the coalition government, something he rightly deserves, although it is slightly ironic that he is now in charge of the department he put forward that we should abolish!
Vince is an absolute gentleman and will not have come to this decision lightly.
The text of Vince Cable’s resignation letter to Nick Clegg is below:
I am writing to offer my resignation in my role as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats.
It has been an honour to serve as the Deputy Leader of our party. However, in joining the cabinet I have taken on many new challenges and responsibilities and it is right that I focus wholeheartedly on the job in hand.
These are exciting times to be a Liberal Democrat, and despite all the challenges we face we have a real opportunity to change Britain for the better. There are great opportunities for the party alongside our working in coalition.
I wish my successor all the best in what is a rewarding and important role.
In response to the letter, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg said:
“Vince has been a fantastic Deputy Leader during an exciting time for the party. I look forward to us continuing to work together in government.”
The election for the new Deputy Leader will take place on Wednesday 9 June with Lord (William) Wallace acting as the returning officer.
There will be a formal meeting of the Parliamentary Party on Wednesday 2 June to receive nominations.
Should more than one nomination be forthcoming, hustings will take place at the meeting of the Parliamentary Party on 9 June. The ballot will take place at the end of that meeting, with the result declared thereafter.
Now, who should be the next Deputy Leader? For a start, in my humble opinion, it should not be one of the MPs who is a Minister or in the Cabinet, I know that slims the options down but I really think the back benchers need a voice.
I would like to see Michael Moore MP nominated. Michael is currently the Deputy Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats and I feel would add a lot to the role and would provide Nick Clegg with real support.
However, it is not up to me, a mere staffer for the Liberal Democrats.
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