Losing Lib Dems are simply the best value at party conference

Written by Rod Muir on 19 September 2017 in Diary

Nick Clegg spoke out on the fringe, while others turned to karaoke.

Nick Clegg used an appearance at the party’s annual conference to hit out at Labour for "demonising austerity" - and to compare David Cameron to a gorilla.

The former party leader and deputy prime minister took the unusual approach of appearing to defend austerity as he spoke to Lib Dem activists in Bournemouth.

He said that Ed Miliband was responsible for the rise of Jeremy Corbyn "because if you spend five years demonising austerity as some sort of evil choice, then of course you can never digest ideas that sometimes you need row back as a country in a way of living within the means of what you can afford".

Clegg also insisted his party was right to enter coalition with the Conservatives. But he criticised David Cameron for going out of his way to satisfy right-wing Tory backbenchers and newspaper editors.

"It was like being a caged with a demented gorilla who was constantly thrashing around constantly trying to find new ways to satisfy Jacob Rees-Mogg, Paul Dacre and these loopy people," he said.

Clegg, who lost his Sheffield Hallam seat to Labour’s Jared O’Mara in the 2017 general election, was not the only ousted Lib Dem MP to find their voice at this year’s party conference.

Sarah Olney lost her Richmond Park constituency to Zac Goldsmith in the recent election – just six months after stole the seat from the former Tory London mayoral candidate.

Simon Hughes, a former Lib Dem deputy leader, lost his Bermondsey seat in 2015 and then failed to stop it going to Labour with an increased majority this year.

Ironically, the pair teamed up at conference to belt out the Tina Turner classic ‘Simply The Best’.






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