GLASGOW Scotland (Reuters) – Since partnering with Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservatives in 2010, the junior party in Britain’s first coalition government since World War Two has watched its opinion poll ratings slump.
The Liberal Democrats have been hammered in local, parliamentary and European elections and pollsters predict they could lose around half their 56 lawmakers in the 2015 vote. Yet they could still hold the balance of power.
Polls show voters remain unconvinced of the opposition Labour party’s ability to handle the economy or its leader Ed Miliband’s image, while support for the Conservatives has been hit by its austerity measures and the fact many Britons are yet to see the benefits of a return to economic growth.
Last week Cameron’s party took their first opinion poll lead in more than two years, but with both the main parties regularly polling 30-35 percent each, the race is expected to be close.
The Liberal Democrats were contemplating their options as they gathered for their annual conference this week and while the official position is that they would take their cue from voters and hold talks with whoever wins the most seats, opinion over who they would prefer to work with was split.
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