Sunday, April 29, 2012

Independent: Dick Newby to be new Lib Dem chief whip in the Lords

The Independent on Sunday reports that Dick Newby is to become the new Lib Dem chief whip in the House of Lords. This appointment follows the retirement of David Shutt.

Following this, the paper goes in for all sorts of interesting, but contradictory and lightly sourced, gossip:
Senior party figures are discussing a possible challenge to Mr Clegg's authority. One party grandee called for a "stated change of direction" from the Liberal Democrat leader after 3 May, to placate party members upset by the NHS reforms and Mr Clegg's continuing closeness to David Cameron. 
Another senior Liberal Democrat said there was talk of a leadership challenge. He said that "no one is at the stage of collecting letters" but warned that, without a drastic change of course, Mr Clegg could face a "visitation from the men in grey suits" telling him he must go. 
However, most Liberal Democrat MPs believe Mr Clegg will stay the course until the next election.


Chris Rennard said...

I wrote about Dick's appointment here:

Mick Taylor said...

I have actually spoken to Lord Shutt. He simply wants to take a backbench role after 7 years as chief whip for the Lib Dems in the Lords. He also wants the chance to speak on the issues of the day, something Chief Whips are not normally able to do.

Where do people get ideas about challenges to Nick Clegg out of that?