- 4 updates
The Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has admitted his party will face a tough fight in London at the next election, when Brent Central MP Sarah Teather stands down.
Last week the former education minister criticsed her own party and announced she was quitting in 2015. In an interview with ITV News, Nick Clegg said he knows the keeping the seat won't be easy. He spoke to Paul Brand.
A former Conservative education minister has allegedlysuggested that the Lib Dem MP Sarah Teather was a poor families minister because she has no children.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Tim Loughton said Miss Teather, who has no children, failed to support married couples in office because she “doesn’t really believe in family”.
Mr Loughton, who was speaking to activists at the Conservative Renewal conference in Windsor, said: "The person who was actually in charge of family policy amongst the ministerial team at the DfE [Department for Education] was Sarah Teather.
"Which was a bit difficult because she doesn't really believe in family. She certainly didn't produce one of her own. So it became a bit of a family-free zone. I think that is a huge disappointment."
Mr Loughton has since tweeted that his words had been "distorted" by journalists, and were "not a personal attack" on Miss Teather.
The MP said he was "sorry" and his criticism was "not intended or fair" and was meant to be of Lib Dem family policy rather than of Miss Teather.
A former colleague of Brent MP Sarah Teather, who has resigned as an MP because she disagrees with government policies, has suggested she failed to support tax breaks for married couples because "she doesn't really believe in family"
It's reported that Conservative Tim Loughton, who worked alongside Miss Teather in the Department for Education, told the Conservative Renewal conference in Windsor:
“The person who was actually in charge of family policy amongst the ministerial team at the DfE was Sarah Teather.
Which was a bit difficult because she doesn't really believe in family. She certainly didn't produce one of her own. So it became a bit of a family-free zone. I think that is a huge disappointment”
See the Telegraph article reporting the story here
Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg says he's sorry to see the departure of Brent MP Sarah Teather, but does not agree with her reasons for leaving
See also Brent MP to quit over policies