Liberal Democrats leadership election, 1999
The 1999 Liberal Democrats leadership election was called following the resignation of Paddy Ashdown as Leader of the Liberal Democrats. There were five candidates and all members of the party were balloted using the Alternative Vote preference system. The election was won by Charles Kennedy, who served as leader until his resignation in 2006.
The chief issue in the election was whether the party should continue its partial collaboration with the Labour Party, which had seen Ashdown and other senior Liberal Democrats appointed to a joint Cabinet committee on electoral reform. Most of the candidates were to various degrees sceptical about this approach, with Simon Hughes the most hostile and Charles Kennedy the strongest defender of Ashdown. The campaign was almost entirely free of bitterness and outspoken comments. Kennedy was generally favoured by the press because of his name recognition, which derived from his frequent appearances on light-hearted panel games on television.
- MPs: Peter Brand, Jenny Tonge.
- Peers: Eric Avebury, Liz Barker, Sally Hamwee, Angie Harris, Sarah Ludford, Susan Miller, Conrad Russell, Susan Thomas.
- MEPs: Sarah Ludford.
- MSPs: Iain Smith, Margaret Smith.
- Other: Cllr Tony Greaves.
This section is empty. You can help by adding to it. (March 2018)
- MPs: Tom Brake, Steve Webb.
- Peers: Tim Beaumont, Margaret Sharp.
- MEPs: Graham Watson.
- MSPs: Robert Brown.
- Welsh AMs: Peter Black.
- Former MPs: Cyril Smith.
- MPs: Colin Breed, John Burnett, Vince Cable, Menzies Campbell, David Chidgey, Brian Cotter, Ronnie Fearn, Don Foster, Andrew George, Mike Hancock, Nick Harvey, Nigel Jones, Paul Keetch, Archie Kirkwood, Richard Livsey, Robert Maclennan, Ray Michie, Michael Moore, Mark Oaten, Lembit Öpik, Mathew Taylor (campaign manager), Paul Tyler, Phil Willis, Jim Wallace.
- Peers: Dominic Addington, John Alderdice, William Bradshaw, Navnit Dholakia, William Goodhart, Tim Clement-Jones, Richard Holme, Roy Jenkins, Russell Johnston, Anthony Lester, Veronica Linklater, Tom McNally, Emma Nicholson, Dick Newby, Tim Razzall, Rupert Redesdale, Dick Taverne, George Thomson, John Thurso, Alan Watson, Shirley Williams.
- MEPs: Nick Clegg, Andrew Duff, Chris Huhne, Emma Nicholson, Diana Wallis.
- MSPs: Ian Jenkins, George Lyon, John Farquhar Munro, Keith Raffan, Tavish Scott, Nicol Stephen, Jamie Stone, Jim Wallace.
- Welsh AMs: Kirsty Williams.
- Other: Jane Bonham Carter, Richard Grayson, Gordon Lishman, Lindsay Granshaw, Matthew Oakeshott, Cllr Mike Storey.
|Second ballot required|
|Third ballot required|
As a result of the second round, Rendel was eliminated. The remaining four candidates would face each other in a third round.
|Third ballot required|
As a result of the third round, Ballard was eliminated. The remaining three candidates would face each other in a final round.
|Charles Kennedy elected|
- "Kennedy wins Lib Dem leadership", On This Day, BBC News, 9 August 1999