UK's political refresh puts women in charge of major parties

Sturgeon on election night: She will remain one of the most influential people in British politics in the coming five years
Sturgeon on election night: She will remain one of the most influential people in British politics in the coming five years INM

THE fallout from the results of the UK General Election has had one surprising effect: every major political party in the UK, except the Conservatives, is now led by a woman.

Harriet Harman (Labour), Nicola Sturgeon (SNP), Leanne Wood (Plaid Cymru), Natalie Bennett (Green), Suzanne Evans (Ukip) and Sal Brinton (Liberal Democrats) are presently leading their respective parties.

Only the Conservatives, having squeaked a tiny majority, remain with the 48-year-old David Cameron.

Harman and Evans, who stepped in following the resignation of Ed Miliband and Nigel Farage respectively, will give way to a new leader once elected.

But the former Labour deputy, who ruled herself out of the leadership battle, may cede to another woman (such as Yvette Cooper) while Evans has been touted as the favourite to succeed Farage's right-wing party (should Farage not decide to run again).

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats - whose leader Nick Clegg stood down yesterday following their worst defeat since 1957 - are technically led by party president Sarah Brinton.

A Lib Dem spokesperson confirmed to The Independent that despite Clegg "officially" remaining the leader until a new one is elected Baroness Brinton, popularly known as Sal Brinton, is the de facto person in charge.

The SNP's Nicola Sturgeon looks set to dominate British politics for the coming five years and although Leanne Wood's burst of publicity on the national stage failed to translate into votes, her leadership of Plaid Cymru appears secure.

Finally, despite the Green Party's disappointing showing nationwide there has been no sign that leader Natalie Bennett will step down.

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