UK & World News
Tim Farron: Lib Dems 'Strong As Cockroaches'
The Liberal Democrats are in a "critical state" and should not assume their survival is guaranteed, the party's president has told a parliamentary journal.
But Tim Farron indicated recent allegations that former party chief executive Lord Rennard sexually harassed activists would not fuel their downfall "because 99% of the people out there just don't care".
He also likened Lib Dems to cockroaches for their resilience and described the party's MPs as "nutters".
Mr Farron told journal The House: "We are a bit like cockroaches after a nuclear war, just a bit less smelly, we are made of sterner stuff."
He added: "The party is in a critical state. We may well be cockroach-ish, but we shouldn't take that for granted.
"One day someone will stand on us if we are not careful. We shouldn't assume our survival is guaranteed."
The party has faced intense pressure to reveal exactly who knew what and when about allegations - strongly denied by Lord Rennard - that women activists were sexually harassed.
Mr Farron, who previously suggested the party had "screwed up" - said the Lib Dems "certainly appear to have let people down" but insisted it was crucial that they did not now go into "institutional self-defence mode".
He added: "I think 99% of the people out there just don't care, it's not been raised.
"I've done a lot of door knocking both in Eastleigh and in my patch this last week. It was mentioned to me once, and that was in sympathy."
Mr Farron suggested the party was "judged more harshly" because it was not in the pockets of powerful people.
And he hit out at coalition colleagues suggesting Prime Minister David Cameron had become "very weak", and claiming the Lib Dems had at least three candidates "who could do a better job" as Chancellor than George Osborne.
He added Lib Dems could not be "parachuted" into safe seats so the only way to get elected "is by being a nutter and working your socks off".
what do you think?
d and d Phillips
Yes, the party of cockroaches.
Ilike Farrons comparison of the Libdems with cockroaches, they are the most obnoxious insects of all living in dark fetid places.and being unable to evolve, they reached their social heights feeding off dinossaur dung and when the dinossaur became extinct spent millions of years living in limbo looking for another herd of dinossaurs.having found the Libdems they were amazed that they would be treated as equals. But the cockroach had better evolve quickly because like the dinossaur their new found food source will be extinct in the next 2 years and they will be in limbo again for the next millions of years
An insult to cockroaches.
The sooner someone stands on the LibDems, and their fellow-traveller Cameron, the better!