Sir Vince Cable: We need to ‘detoxify’ the Lib Dems for LGBT voters
PinkNews speaks to new Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable about his plans to tackle the party’s demons for LGBT workers.
Sitting down in Vince Cable’s office, we quip that it is nice to have a Lib Dem leader who is actually willing to do an interview with PinkNews.
No one laughs.
The former Business Secretary took over the reins of the liberal anti-Brexit party following the tumultuous collapse of Tim Farron’s leadership.
An evangelical Christian, Mr Farron’s leadership became defined almost entirely by a bungled row over LGBT issues, refusing to answer questions over his views on gay sex.
Mr Farron’s leadership died a death of a thousand cuts via the mainstream media, failing to address the issue week after week until the spat became terminal.
He spent the last months of his leadership essentially in hiding from PinkNews, rejecting multiple requests for a sit-down interview.
Lib Dem members have long cited the party’s record of championing equal rights before either Labour or the Conservatives – but PinkNews polling earlier this year showed that the party’s vote among LGBT people has been substantially drained.
Sir Vince, who was the only candidate to put himself forward to follow Mr Farron as leader, is candid about how poorly the issue was managed.
He says: “I don’t think it was handled very well… it did us quite a lot of political damage and we all know that. I am keen to get us back on track.”
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