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Last Updated: Sunday, 8 January 2006, 06:15 GMT
Kennedy resignation fills papers
Charles Kennedy's resignation as leader of the Liberal Democrats has filled the front pages of Sunday's papers.

The news was summed up in the Sunday Express as "Battered Kennedy finally steps down", saying he had given into the inevitable as support fell away.

The Sunday Mirror said he was "finished from the moment he admitted what he had tried to hide with an ever increasing web of lies."

Meanwhile the Observer simply led with the headline "Kennedy resigns".

Leadership contest

Speculation was rife in Sunday's papers over who will succeed Charles Kennedy following his resignation.

The Independent on Sunday says deputy leader Sir Menzies Campbell has already emerged as the favourite.

The Mail on Sunday added Kennedy was betrayed by allies of "Ming the Merciless".

But the Sunday Times believes the Conservative Party's new lease of life under David Cameron contributed to the fall in fortunes of the Lib Dems.

Drink problem

Charles Kennedy's drink problem has been heavily scrutinised by the Sunday papers.

The Observer says it was one of Westminster's worst-kept secrets, but it was only when Mr Kennedy gave up the drink that the crisis emerged.

Columnist Andrew Rawnsley wrote it was when he was trying to stay on the wagon that the wheels finally came off his leadership.

He added the nature of Mr Kennedy's departure would damage the party.

Wife's tribute

The Sunday Telegraph focused its front page on a tribute from Charles Kennedy's wife, after advising him to quit as leader of the Lib Dems.

"I am very proud of him, personally and for what he has achieved," she said.

The paper said it was the advice of wife Sarah Gurling that finally persuaded Mr Kennedy to quit from his position.

It said his resignation came after days of clinging onto the leadership.


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