Be afraid Nick, very afraid…
Changing the subject, his press team told Guido a few weeks ago they would be publishing his expenses about now. Now Hannah in his office says they didn’t tell Guido that, and they will be publishing his expenses in “a few weeks”. Just as well, because Clegg himself warned us nearly a month ago that “Any delay will only add to the British public’s distrust in their politicians.”
Guido fears she could in a few years turn into a liberal version of Anne Widdecombe…
UPDATE :While Hague had 14 beers a day, Clegg tells GQ magazine that he has dabbled his pork sword with some 30 different women. Sarah needs to keep her side up…
“There are legitimate grounds for appealing the decision to publish private addresses. However, there is no earthly reason why the rest of the information should not be published immediately.
“Any delay will only add to the British public’s distrust in their politicians.”
GF : I see from Nick’s press release that he thinks MPs should publish their full expenses immediately. When is he going to publish his expenses?
Tim : I don’t know. Can I get his press officer Hannah to call you?
GF : When is Lynne going to publish her expenses in full?
Ian : Err, don’t know. I’ll ask her.
GF : Great, get back to me.
Guido called Ed Davey’s Office.
GF : When is Ed going to publish his expenses in full?
Kerry : He will as soon as he can. We have had staffing problems and he has been very busy with the Lisbon Treaty.
So Ed Davey is going to publish his expenses in full. Just as well because his leader says any delay will “will only add to the British public’s distrust in their politicians.” The LibDems are talking the talk, can they walk the walk? Don’t delay…
UPDATE 16.15 : Clegg’s office has just called to say he will be publishing his expenses in full the week after next. They were not clear if all LibDem MPs will be doing the same.
The logo and website have a Top of the Pops circa-1974 feel. Which is either knowingly kitsch or perhaps just like the Liberal Party of yore, outdated and retro. Groovy kids!
It consistently tops the Reaganite Heritage Foundation’s Index of Economic Freedom. Judging by reports Vince Cable would love it here – at an off-the-record* post-budget briefing he gave to clients of pollsters ComRes, he lauded Nigel Lawson’s tax reforms and Ronald Reagan’s rolling back of big government. Vince was happily quoting Reagan’s dictum that the most chilling thing you can be told is “We’re from the government and we are here to help you.”
As George Osborne promises to stick to Gordon Brown’s tax and over-spend policies, maybe the most fertile political ground for the LibDems to stake out is to be liberal on economics rather than social democrat. The centre-right German Free Democrats and the Irish Progressive Democrats have been in government more often than not since the late 80s, despite being small liberal parties. Something to think about as we contemplate a hung parliament…
They have also introduced Green tax cuts! Financial Secretary John Tsang also announced last month tax incentives for “Greener” vehicles and a concessionary profits tax reduction for capital expenditure on “Greener” machinery and equipment. Corporate taxes were also reduced this year 1% to 16.5%. Pay attention Osborne at the back.
Perhaps he has good reason to explain Tory economic policy out of sight, being too timid to put the case for tax relief for the struggling middle classes and reducing state over-spending. The Tories basically accept that because of the dire fiscal position Chancellor Osborne will stick with Gordon Brown’s tax and spending plans. As we tip towards worldwide recession and a global financial crisis the Tories are advocating “tax hikes on alcopops!” and the LibDems “tax cuts for smoothies!” Pathetically unambitious.