LibLink: Nick Clegg, the New Statesman interview and crying

The latest edition of the New Statesman has an interview with Nick Clegg, which has mostly garnered attention for the shock news that Nick Clegg is a human being and has been known to cry to music:

He is besotted by his “three lovely boys” and is most proud “by a long shot” of the family life he has created with Miriam. They manage to lead a relatively normal life, “not in a bunker in Westminster”, and he tries to pick his children up from school and put them to bed at night at least two or three times a week.

He regrets that sometimes he doesn’t always get the balance right, which makes him “quite miserable” and unable to do his job properly. Sometimes he has to tell them white lies if he is stuck in a meeting. At home, in the evenings, he likes to read novels and says he “cries regularly to music.”

However, there’s also much of substance in the piece, including:

Clegg was a strong opponent of the war in Iraq and for that he earned many supporters. His backing of the “surge” and British forces’ continued presence in Afghan­istan is therefore surprising. There are rumours, which he denies, that he wanted to call for an immediate withdrawal of troops but that the former Lib Dem leader Paddy Ashdown, an ex-marine, persuaded him not to.

“In a sense,” Clegg says, “we have brought our ambition to a much more realistic level. We’ve now got an exit date, which we didn’t have before, and a much better set of weapons on the ground. And crucially you’ve got the British government saying to [President Hamid] Karzai – who I had dinner with recently – this cannot be won militarily. Once you’re in that far and you’ve had that many people die and be maimed, I think it would be morally questionable to cut and run overnight.”

You can read the full interview with Nick Clegg here.

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This entry was posted in LibLink.


  • Can’t help thinking the ‘Lady on the train’ is a Tory voter.

  • Some of this stuff does make me wonder who is nick’s media advisor?

  • I’m no fan of his but, people should cheer that he keeps a relatively normal family life. We will never get normal people into politics if we stop politicians leading normal lives. As to crying at music, I must say that there are some deeply evocative pieces of music that can give rise to great emotions within me. However, it is only when his children get to be teenagers that he will learn the true meaning of crying at music !!!

    As to Lord Ashdown, he is a former Royal Marine, it may not be a big distinction to the original author of the piece but it means a lot to anyone who has served int he Corps and to me shows that there may an element of research lacking. It is also a complete misnomer to try to associate Afghanistan with Iraq. The issues are less clear cut and always have been.

    Some of this is too easy fodder for the press though, and like the recent stance on interns, and in my opinion becoming too closely associated with the NHS reforms, you have to ask who is advising him.

  • Clegg’s task, like all politicians, is to rattle off rhetoric, to be evasive and as uncontroversial as possible, and to fill up the tape with unquotable patter.

    All of which makes interviewing him excruciating

    Are all politicians of any political persuasion not like this?

  • Yikes,

    This one is wrong on so many levels. If you have to stand by what you’ve done – why didn’t he scrap the HE increases, or does it only count if you perform a volte face?

    Also the bit that he didn’t spend time campaigning on student fees. A quick search on youtube reveals the truth

    Take your pick on which one you watch –

    I picked the 1st in the list – there are quite a few though 😉

    Perversely, the no2av lot seem to be sponsoring nick clegg searches on youtube and google. Promoted and sponsored links to them at the top. They have obviously decided he’s tainted enough to associate their campaign with

  • messed up the blockquote in the above

    Reference to this

    ” He refuses to concede that signing the pledge to vote against an increase in university tuition fees before the election was a mistake. “That would be a cop-out. I did it. And I have a rather old-fashioned belief that you’ve got to stand by what you’ve done and take the consequences, good or bad.” He insists that it was not one of his main manifesto priorities anyway. “I didn’t even spend that much time campaigning on tuition fees.”

  • I voted Lib Dem in the General Election and I will be voting Lib Dem on May 5th.

    One reason, amongst many, is that when an honest man is unfairly pilloried and vilified by the press and certain pressure groups, it says to me that he is on the right track and doing the right thing.

    No one should be attacked for trying to put right the years of mismanagement of the economy of this country.

    The attackers don’t offer any alternatives but merely scream “Leave us alone”. ‘”I’m alright jack”.

    History will prove you right Nick. Stick with it.

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