Lib Dem preparations for the general election have been thrown into chaos. The party’s candidate in a marginal seat in Somerset has announced she won’t be standing. Sara Yong was chosen only six months ago to replace David Heath in Somerton and Frome. But she has now said: “it is with great regret that I’ve decided to stand down.”
Yong says she has made her decision “for personal reasons and as a result of changes in personal circumstances. It’s a decision I’ve not taken lightly, and it’s one I take with a heavy heart. I would have loved to have followed in David Heath’s footsteps as the MP for Somerton and Frome.”
Lib Dems ‘bracing themselves for a difficult contest’.
The Lib Dems are now bracing themselves for a difficult contest and possible defeat in a seat they have held for 17 years. Stephen Tall of Liberal Democrat Voice said: “Holding Somerton and Frome will be a tough battle. Holding it with a candidate with just months to bed into the constituency before the next election tougher still. Good luck to the local party and whoever they select.”
Somerton and Frome’s Lib Dem MP, David Heath served as Deputy Leader of the House of Commons and as Minister for Farming and Food, before he was sacked in a reshuffle in October last year. Soon afterwards, he announced his decision to leave parliament in 2015.
Labour PPC : “Chaotic LibDems”
David Oakensen, Somerton and Frome’s Labour candidate said “Chaotic local LibDems can’t find a candidate and have lost two. Are local LibDems running scared? Heath’s time as a LibDem MP ends in massive unpopularity as he backed Tory policies on scrapping the agricultural wages board, bedroom tax, the badger cull and tuition fees. Who would want to follow that? It will be Labour that take on the Tories and show up their divisive inept running of this country.”