The Liberal Democrats were formerd on 3 March 1988 After the merger between the Liberals and the Social Democrats. They are a centist party. After in 1981 26 Labour Mps joined the Social Democrats. It was mergerd after the collapse of the socila democrats.
Ashdown Era (1988 - 1999)
Ashdown came to office as Leader of the Social and Liberal Democrats. In the 1989 European Elections they got 5.9% coming 4th below the greens. They didn't get a single MEP. However in 1990 they did recover in the Local Elections getting 17% of the vote and the eastbourne By-Election gaining a 20% swing. Eastbourne had a 16,784 majority for Ian Gow which the Liberal Democrats won . In 1991 they gained Ribble vallye and Kincardine and Deeside. However in the 1992 General Elecion they had only got 17.8% vote which was what they got in the 1990 Local Elections. And won 18 seats 6 less than the Alliance 5 years ago.
The 1994 European Elections were a triumph for the Liberal Democrats they got 16.1% vote gaining 10.2% of the vote with their first 2 MEPS. When Tony Blair got elected as leader of the Labour Party .Ashdown was determined to work with Tony Blair . In the 1995 and 1996 Local Elections the Liberal Democrats came second beating the Conservertives into third place.In the 1997 General Election , Ashdown won 46 seats up 28 from 1992.
Charles Kennedy Era (1999-2006)
In the 2001 General Election Kennedy gained a further 5 seats to 51 MPs. Kennedy opposed the Iraq War and was on the left on many social issues he firmly believed in Electrol Reform and Open Goverment. They gained some Laboru strongholds gaining Brent East and Leicester South and in 2005 Charles Kennedy Gained a further 11 seats to a high point of 62 MPs.
Howerver on the 5 January 2006 Charles Kennedy announced a leadership election with Sir Menzies Campbell as a front runner after Kennedy stepped down . Sir Menzies Campbell won the first and second ballot with 44.7% and 57.1% of the vote.
Campbell Era (2006-2007)
The Campbell Era saw the Liberal Democrats with Campbell pledging to cut the basic rate of tax from 20% to 16%. Campbell Resigned in October 2007 and Vince Cable took over.
Clegg Era (2007-2015)
The Clegg Era was destructive for the Lib Dems as initially he was a liberal and his 2010 manifesto was revolutionary pro - european and Anti- Nuclear Weapons and no tution fees they were also campaining for Electral Reform. In the first Debate Nick Clegg won the first debate . In th2 2010 General Election Clegg only won 57 sears and wen to 23% of the vote. Clegg got into a coalitoion with David Cameron and the tories.
In the 2010 Ermengency Budget George Osbourne instituted a huge landscape of cuts and in October 2010 there was a vote on tuition fees which passed 323 - 302 from then on in the lib dems declined in the polls from 23% to 11% and the AV Referundum which they lost (33% for 66% against). In the 2012 , 2013 , 2014 local elections they decline even more. The 2015 General Election saw the Lib Dems go from 57 MPs to 8 MPs
Tim Farron (2015-2017)
In September 2015 Tim Faron was elected Leader if the Lib Dems and in the May 2016 Local Elections wen to 15% almost doubling the 2015 General Election vote. Farron and the lib dems campaigned for Remain in the 2016 EU Referundum and after they lost the membership for the Lib Dems went to 80,000. In the 2017 General Election Faron came under controversy for saying that gay sex is a sin . In 2017 General Election they gained 4 MPs and lsot 1.3% of the vote . Faron Resigned as Leader of the Liberal Democrats.
Vince Cable (2017-
Vince Cable is the current leader of lib dems and supports a second referendum on Brexit