Lib Dems: Only 7 Women MPs
Nick Clegg is planning to award peerages to a number of the Liberal Democrats’ key female activists in an attempt to rebut claims his party is anti-women according to the Daily Telegraph.
At the moment just 7 of the Lib Dems’ 57 MPs are women (12.7%), a figure which compares unfavourably with Labour, where almost one in three MPs (31 per cent) is female. The Conservatives are on 16 per cent.
And Lib Dem insiders believe the proportion could go down after the next general election in 2015, because five of the Lib Dems’ seven women MPs, represent constituencies which are among the 12 most vulnerable of the party’s seats.
The source said “It’s very hard for us to do anything about that in the Commons for the next election, because we have so few winnable seats where a new candidate can be chosen."
Mr Clegg plans to use the appointment of working peers to promote more women despite saying last year that he would refuse to take up a peerage - something which could open him up to hypocrisy charges. He said at the time “I personally will not take a seat in an unreformed House of Lords. It just sticks in the throat.”
Last month Angela Eagle, Labour’s shadow transport secretary, pointed out there were as many knights on the Lib Dem benches in the Commons as there were women.