When a cabinet minister can’t open a door – from our archive

Liberal Democrat Voice has a fantastic archive of posts going back to our establishment in 2006. Here’s an interesting article from The Voice, which was published in October 2006. You can read the post in its original form, with comments, here:

There is a set of stairs in the mother of all Parliaments. At the top is the committee corridor, and the office of the leader of the Liberal Democrats. In the middle, is the MP’s tea room, and at the bottom, is the most popular restaurant in the palace. It is a busy set of stairs.

There is a member of the cabinet, a prominent member of the cabinet, who cannot open a door.

Parliament has many doors that require a swipe card to pass through them. Helpfully, our swipe cards come with a big black arrow on the side that you should swipe, indicating the direction in which one swipes it.

Thus I stood behind said cabinet member as they, standing at the entrance to the bottom of the aforementioned stairs, tried once… twice.. and when they were going to do it wrong for the third time, your bemused blogger deferentially murmered, “may I, Secretary of State?” and opened the blasted door for them.

That person is responsible for rather a lot of money. We should live in fear.

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist and member of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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This entry was posted in From the LDV Archive.


  • Richard Underhill 14th Aug '15 - 7:58pm

    Gordon Brown or John Prescott?

  • Richard Underhill 16th Aug '15 - 1:52pm

    Former MP & PM Gordon Brown will make a statement about the Labour Party at 2 pm today, British Summer Time.

  • Richard Underhill 16th Aug '15 - 3:25pm

    Gordon Brown, steeped in Labour Party history, with amusing, powerful and interesting anecdotes, started by saying that he does not want a peerage. He was proud of Clem Atlee. CM was proud of his achievements, including his peerage and OM. When Manny Shinwell accepted a peerage the Tories thought they had won.
    In GB’s constituency he met a woman who could not afford a bus fare to go to a foodbank and being out of power could do nothing to help.
    He made one positive mention of Tony Blair, but did not say that they had both supported the invasion of Iraq.
    The main theme was that Labour’s objective should be more than the art of the possible, which he described as a tory theme, but that it was and is essential to gain power in order to deliver.
    He mentioned none of the Labour leadership candidates by name, but the message is ckear that he will not be voting for Jeremy Corbyn because he also wants Labour to win the next general election.
    He knew John Smith very well and admired him greatly, but. some believe that Labour’s Shadow Chancellor was responsible for Labour losing the 1992 general election after thirteen years of Tory rule. (Pollsters have said it was not Neil Kinnock’s Sheffield rally). John Smith had led the Labour campaign in the Ribble Valley by-election. If he had been more successful the Poll Tax would not have been abolished.
    Gordon Brown was positive about the upcoming EU referendum and the need for the UK to stay in the EU, differing from JC.

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