Ed Davey elected new leader of the Liberal Democrats

He defeated rival Layla Moran by 42,756 votes to 24,564 to take over from Jo Swinson.

Ed Davey elected new leader of the Liberal Democrats Getty Images

Sir Ed Davey has been elected as the new leader of the UK Liberal Democrats.

Davey, who previously served as a cabinet minister in the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition government, defeated Oxford West and Abingdon MP Layla Moran in the contest.

Party members backed him by 42,756 votes to Moran’s 24,564 in a leadership race that had been put on hold due to coronavirus.

Davey, who represents Kingston and Surbiton in the House of Commons, has been acting leader since Jo Swinson resigned after losing her East Dunbartonshire seat in the 2019 general election.

He said he now wants to turn the party around after “three disappointing general election results”.

Davey said: “We have to wake up and smell the coffee. Nationally our party has lost touch with too many voters.

“Yes, we are powerful advocates locally. Our campaigners listen to local people, work hard for communities and deliver results.

“But at the national level, we have to face the facts of three disappointing general election results.

“The truth is: voters don’t believe the Liberal Democrats want to help ordinary people get on in life.”

Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie congratulated his new UK counterpart.

Rennie said: “Ed Davey will be a great new leader of the Liberal Democrats. He has the determination to get us a winning again. 

“Ed Davey marks a change for the Liberal Democrats and he is determined to listen very carefully to what the voters have to say. 

“Many people want the Liberal Democrats to play a big part in the life of our country.

“Ed Davey has the experience and determination to fulfil that ambition.”

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