Newly-elected Lib Dem MP could be party’s next leader

PUBLISHED: 16:29 16 December 2019 | UPDATED: 16:29 16 December 2019

Will Daisy Cooper replace Jo Swinson as Lib Dem leader? Photograph: LBC.

Will Daisy Cooper replace Jo Swinson as Lib Dem leader? Photograph: LBC.

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A Liberal Democrat MP elected last Thursday could become the party’s new leader.

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Daisy Cooper became St Alban's first ever Liberal Democrat MP, winning the seat off former Tory MP Anne Main.

Despite being newly-elected, the MP has further ambitions, refusing the rule out that she could become the party's next leader when the leadership race begins.

Speaking to LBC's Iain Dale, she said: "Well, it's day three, right? It's day three as an MP for me.

"I've got a list of 100 organisations I want to contact in my first 100 days. I've got a massive collection to organise for our local food bank in St Albans in the next couple of weeks. I've got an office to set up.

"Let's see where we are in a few weeks time but I'm not going to rule anything out at this stage."

Dale replied: "Well, that's interesting in itself because I would have thought as a new MP, you would say no, it's too early."

But Cooper insisted her experience of campaigning meant that she had experience for the job, having previously stood for the party in Suffolk Coastal in 2010 and Mid Sussex in 2015.

"Well, quite frankly, you know, I've worked in campaigns for a long time.

"We've got 11 MPs in parliament but I'm also hoping to join the More United MP network, which is a cross party network of 60 MPs."

She continued: "I've got big ambitions about what we can achieve in parliament as a small team in the Lib Dems but I've also got ambitions about the kind of country that I want to be living in.

"You know, I want Britain to be an open internationalist, environmentalist country that creates a safety net for people and gives people power over their own lives.

"I think we are a long way from that under this Conservative government and I don't think the Labour government is going to step up to the plate.

So I've got big ambitions for the kind of country that I want to live in and I'll have to sort of see as a as an MP on day three, the best place to start for that is in St Albans. Let's see where we are in a few weeks time."

In 2014 Cooper ran for president of the Liberal Democrats, coming second place behind acting leader Sal Brinton.

Last week Jo Swinson suggested she wanted to see a female replace her as leader - and hinted a newly-elected MP could take the job.

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