Lord Oakeshott issued this statement announcing his intention to resign from the Liberal Democrats and take a leave of absence from the House of Commons.
I am today taking leave of absence from the House of Lords and resigning as a member of the Liberal Democrats. I am sure the Party is heading for disaster if it keeps Nick Clegg; and I must not get in the way of the many brave Liberal Democrats fighting for change.
– Lord Oakeshott
I leave, with a heavy heart, the party I helped to found with such high hopes with Roy Jenkins, Bill Rodgers, Shirley Williams and David Owen at Limehouse in 1981.
We then, like most Liberal Democrats now, wanted a radical progressive party, not a “split the difference” Centre Party, with, in Shirley’s memorable words, no roots, no principles and no values.
But that is where Nick Clegg has led us. I am sorry I have so upset and embarrassed my old friend Vince Cable and that we were not able to talk before he issued yesterday’s statement from China.