Oaten out of Lib Dem race

HOME affairs spokesman Mark Oaten has pulled out of the race to become leader of the Liberal Democrats.The decision of Mr Oaten, the 41 year-old MP for Winchester, is a recognition that there is more support for the little known Chris Huhne, MP for neighbouring Eastleigh, among the right of centre “economic Liberals” in the party.

By Graham Dines

HOME affairs spokesman Mark Oaten has pulled out of the race to become leader of the Liberal Democrats.

The decision of Mr Oaten, the 41 year-old MP for Winchester, is a recognition that there is more support for the little known Chris Huhne, MP for neighbouring Eastleigh, among the right of centre “economic Liberals” in the party.

Mr Oaten's withdrawal leaves three MPs seeking to succeed Charles Kennedy, who quit as leader after admitting he has an alcohol problem. They are acting leader Sir Menzies Campbell, Simon Hughes and Mr Huhne.


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