Clegg could agree second coalition with Conservatives

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Sheffield Hallam MP Nick Clegg could lead his Liberal Democrats into a second coalition with the Conservatives.

Prime Minister David Cameron has held private talks with cabinet ministers about changing Tory party rules which would make it easier to strike another deal.

Mr Cameron wants to quell backbench unhappiness about the current power-sharing deal with the Lib Dems by proposing they are consulted on any future coalition - with the final text of any agreement approved by a vote of his MPs.

In 2010, Lib Dem party rules forced Mr Clegg to consult the party’s MPs, peers and members about the details of the coalition agreement.

All party members had opportunities to vote.

A Conservative Cabinet minister said senior Tories are studying the ‘Lib Dem approach’ to any future deal.

The minister said: “The Lib Dems had meeting after meeting about the deal. Yes, it took a bit longer, but it meant that every one of them was actively signed up to the coalition, and they’ve been quite disciplined.”

Mr Clegg declined to comment. The Deputy Prime Minister’s spokesman said he would consider the situation depending on the outcome of the 2015 general election.