The Liberal Democrats is a social liberal political party in the United Kingdom, supporting constitutional and electoral reform, progressive taxation, environmentalism, human rights laws, banking reform and civil liberties. The party was formed in 1988 by a merger of the Liberal Party and the Social Democratic Party. The two parties had formed the electoral SDP–Liberal Alliance for seven years prior. The Liberals had been in existence for 129 years and in power under leaders such as Gladstone, Asquith and Lloyd George. During these times in government, the Liberals are credited with the Liberal Reforms, which saw the creation of the welfare state. In the 1920s, the Labour Party replaced the Liberals as the largest opponent of the Conservative Party.
Nick Clegg was elected Leader in 2007.
At the 2010 general election, the Liberal Democrats won 57 seats with 23% of the vote, making them the third-largest party in the House of Commons behind the Conservatives with 307 and Labour with 258. No party having an overall majority, the Liberal Democrats joined a coalition government with the Conservatives, with Clegg becoming Deputy Prime Minister and other Liberal Democrats taking up ministerial positions.
Leader: Nick Clegg MP
Deputy Leader: Simon Hughes MP
President: Tim Farron MP
Founded: 3 March 1988
Merger of: Liberal Party and Social Democratic Party
Youth wing: Liberal Youth
Ideology: Liberalism (British), Social liberalism, Green liberalism, Community politics, Pro-Europeanism
Internal factions: • Progressivism
• Civil libertarianism
• Economic liberalism
June 3, 2010