Andrew Rawnsley is one of the pundits who has found it more difficult than others to cope with the change of regime since May 20101. His contacts at the highest level in the Labour Party were unrivalled, Guido suspects he is not such a popular dinner party guest in government circles. This morning he takes a look at the LibDems in the Observer and tells us that:
One senior Lib Dem says delicately that “there is a question for the longer term” about whether Nick Clegg will be the right face to lead them into the next election.
The “longer term”? That has a familiar ring to it, it is the kind of term that an economist would use. A quick Google reveals it to be a favoured phrase of Vince Cable: “Economic growth must be about long-term commitment… a sustainable solution for the long-term… long-term issue… A Long-Term Focus for Corporate Britain… in the long term”. So Guido thinks we can safely say Cable was the “senior Lib Dem” who briefed Rawnsley as to whether Clegg will be leader in the “long term”.
A few days ago Chris Huhne told Prospect magazine that Nick Clegg in Brussels would indeed “be a tremendous commissioner.” The position becomes available in 2014. That appears to be the long-term…