Vince: I won’t be winning the Bad Sex Award

Vince went from Marr to Pienaar’s Politics this morning..

It started seriously enough and he delivered The Message that there is a great opportunity for us as the other parties are divided. The Brexit train is not unstoppable, he said, and there are significant risks to a disorderly Brexit.

He says there is a sense that people do want to work together to stop things like leaving Euratom. The key is what happens in the Labour Party. The contradiction between him being the hero of young people while working with the Tories to bring about hard Brexit will be exposed.

He says that we may be faced with a completely unacceptable Brexit outcome and people will want the opportunity to vote. With extra young people on the register, the balance of public opinion may be shifting.

He said that all of this could mean an upheaval of the political system and we might just be at the centre of major political transformation like Macron did in France.

He dealt with the age question then. Thankfully, there was no sign of the “culture of youth” stuff he was coning out with last week. He returned to talking about Gladstone who was 82 when he last became PM. Vince said he feels young and has a good team around him. He’s just been through an arduous election and he feels great.

Talk turned to realignment of politics. We aren’t expecting defections but the tensions between the moderates and the revolutionary socialists were, he said, profound.

He said something that reminded me of Nick Clegg when he became leader – that he wanted to bring in the people who broadly agree with us but don’t vote for us. That’s a bit of a statement of the obvious, but it did transport me back to 2007. And then I get to wonder what would have happened if he had stood then. That’s a counterfactual in the making.  Would we have done better in 2010? At whose expense?

Anyway, back to Vince and Pienaar. As the end of the programme approached, the tone lowered a bit. Vince got the usual quick fire questions.

Would the crowds be calling his name at Glastonbury:

“They almost did a few years ago. Who knows where this will go?

He has no regrets about the role we played in government

Greatest regret is having lost two years ago.

Greatest moment of personal triumph – being re-elected and the brilliant response he got from the people of Twickenham.

High point as Secretary of State for Business was being allowed to drive an Aston Martin. He is a bit of a petrol head although he has a “modest hybrid.”

Then the subject turned to his political thriller which comes out in September. What about the sex in it?

It’s not going to win the bad sex award.

It’s discreet and carefully written, apparently. All I can say is thank heavens for that. Anything else would feel very awkward. Nobody wants to think about their leader…….

And then we came to the traditional round of  Snog, Marry, Avoid. He said he already was happily married so that wasn’t an option.

He kept things proper by saying he’d kiss, not snog,  Strictly  judge Darcey Bussell.

He’s avoid Melania Trump, which is probably wise. But you’ll have to listen  from around 45 minutes in to find out what he’d do to Theresa May.

So he managed to escape that with his dignity intact.




* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Op-eds.


  • Katharine Pindar 9th Jul '17 - 11:56pm

    Thanks for keeping us updated, Caron. We shouldn’t forget, though, that Vince is a dancer, quick on his feet. Everything he is reported as saying lately seems reassuring, and indeed excellent in that he says he can see Brexit not happening. In other replies he seems to follow closely our party policy as led by Tim Farron over the past year, all to the good, and he has appeared more at ease in his TV interviews than Tim under pressure managed to be. I trust he will at some point also assure us it is unthinkable to him that Tim could be reckoned prejudiced or illiberal, since our leader of the past two years was and is a true liberal, as the party which esteems him greatly is assured.

  • Bernard Aris 10th Jul '17 - 3:04pm

    I’m wondering about the final Vince & Theresa bit.

    Is it something along the lines of:

    “You will still need me
    Like you did heed me
    When I was 64”

    (of course a Beatles ripoff; in 2007 Vince, 64 years old, deliverded his withering “Pinocchio” comment to “bottling” prime minister Brown; the Tories under Major missed that opportunity to humiliate Brown in Dennis Skinner-style… ).


  • i heard that interview and I thought Vince proved very nimble. However, I did take a sharp intake of breath when he said he would not apologise for his role in government. That, and his continued assertion that he “improved tuition fees” will keep the Lib Dems in single figures in the opinion polls for as long as Vince is leader. This is a great shame as it gives the brexiteers ammunition for their claim that the country voted for a hard Brexit by rejecting the Lib Dems at the recent GE. The country rejected the Lib Dems because of their role in government and because of Vince’s “improvements” to tuition fees, and this situation was exacerbated by the various side issues such as Tim’s faith.

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