The Lib Dems: Clegg position strengthened with appointment of allies

Though the polls say that the Liberal Democrats would do better under a new leader, there was no sign of any weakening in Nick Clegg's position in the reshuffle.

David Laws was arguably Mr Clegg's most ally important before he was forced to resign after only 17 days in Government. Now he is now back, with multiple roles as Minister for Children, reviewer of the Government's policy on Trident, and holder of a roving brief in developing policy.

Three other Clegg allies also have new jobs. His former parliamentary aide, Norman Lamb, is a Health minister, Jeremy Browne is in the Home Office and another former parliamentary aide, Jo Swinson, is a Business minister.

This is all good news for the Deputy Prime Minister. What it does for the average Liberal Democrat party member is another question.