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Liberal Democrats facing heavy local election defeat

Category: Politics

Published: 4th May 2012 06:47:39

The Liberal Democrats have suffered a bruising night of local election defeats, losing Cambridge council and dropping below 3,000 councillors for the first time in their history.

Nick Clegg's party were projected to take 16% of the vote - down eight points from four years ago.

But one Lib Dem minister said he took some encouragement from the results.

The party still controls three councils and remains the largest party in Cambridge, despite losing control.

Foreign minister Jeremy Browne said the party had "held up very well" where it had been running councils. The Lib Dems retained control of Cheltenham, Eastleigh and Portsmouth.

"Where we have the longest track record, where we have been running councils or a dominant force on councils we have been remarkably resilient," he added.

But holding on to those three councils was a small bright spot on an otherwise grim night for Nick Clegg's party.

They had lost over 125 councillors by Friday morning and were not projected to have improved on last year's dismal local election showing.

Mr Browne hinted the party had been punished by voters unhappy with coalition policies.

"I'm not saying it's easy for us - it's tough being in government in midterm, making difficult decisions to get the country on its feet again."

· All the latest election results are available at bbc.co.uk/vote2012

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BBC News, 2012. Liberal Democrats facing heavy local election defeat [Online] (Updated 4th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1426474/Liberal-Democrats-facing-heavy-local-election-defeat [Accessed 22nd Aug 2014]

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