Coffee House

Vince Cable names Lord Oakeshott as source of polling – and slaps him down

27 May 2014

5:51 PM

27 May 2014

5:51 PM

In the past few minutes, Vince Cable has issued this statement on the leaked ICM polling:

‘Lord Oakeshott’s actions are totally inexcusable and unacceptable. I have made it very clear repeatedly that he does not speak or act for me.

‘Commissioning and publishing polls without the consent of the Member of Parliament, as in the case of Sheffield Hallam, is utterly reprehensible.

‘There are undoubtedly raw feelings in the wake of poor local and European election results. We need to respond in a measured way. Public speculation about the leadership is an unwelcome distraction and as I made absolutely clear yesterday there is no leadership issue as far as I’m concerned.’

Oakeshott has not responded to requests for comment all day. He also did not respond to Charlotte Henry when she approached him with her piece about his link with one of the alleged main agitators behind the plot to oust Clegg, which she outlines here.


There is a meeting next week of all Lib Dem MPs, which the whips agreed to before the European election results, knowing that there might be some soul-searching needed in the party. Clegg has also been contacting as many parliamentary colleagues as possible over the past few days. There is still a great deal for the party leadership to do in terms of patching up relationships, mainly because those who have signed the letter calling for Clegg to resign are by no means the usual suspects. Councillors who lost their seats were also rather disgruntled by a letter sent out from HQ and signed by Annette Brooke which managed to imply, by referring to the Lib Dem mantra of ‘where we work, we win’, that those who had lost somehow hadn’t worked.

But this robust slap-down of Oakeshott by Cable, along with the poll published by Lib Dem voice which shows 54 per cent of Lib Dem members want Clegg to stay, and just 39 per cent want him to stand down, will make it very difficult for a coup to gather pace. Clegg’s enemies might be rich and vocal, but they’re perhaps not the best strategists.

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Show comments
  • Terry Field


  • swatnan

    Vince is really a disgrace; its like shooting the Messenger, his messenger.
    Vince is living up to the typical image of Lib Dems as two faced lentil eating surrender monkeys.

  • trevor peacock

    count how many of those who lost there seats are placed in that other gravy train of democracy ? the house of lords

  • Peter Stroud

    And I thought the nasty party was the Tory party.

    • Terry Field

      Why did you think that. It’s socialism that is nasty, really nasty.

  • The Laughing Cavalier

    Methinks the old booby doth protest too much.

  • depee davies

    of course vince knew nothing about this,another limpdum who thinks we are thick.Go UKIP GO,obliterate them once and for all

  • LucieCabrol

    Turd in a brief case anybody.

  • LucieCabrol

    ‘There are undoubtedly raw feelings in the wake of poor local and European election results. We need to respond in a measured way. …..and at this time a measured senior and steady statesman may be what is required to step in and steady the …….

  • GUBU

    Lord Oakeshott looks like someone you would enjoy slapping down.


    With a very heavy object.

    • Gary Wintle


      Clegg is Lloyd George Mk 2…the party needs to jettison him just like it did the Welsh Wizard. Fast.

  • the viceroy’s gin

    “Commissioning and publishing polls without the consent of the Member of
    Parliament, as in the case of Sheffield Hallam, is utterly reprehensible.”


    Buzz off, Vince. You do worse every day.

  • anyfool

    Vince Cable,
    Lord Oakeshott’s actions are totally inexcusable and unacceptable. I have made it very clear repeatedly that he does not speak or act for me,
    He only pays me money for my office and runs a ghost campaign to promote me and my values, this is secret and I know nothing about.

    • Makroon

      The Times is reporting that the part of the poll not leaked to the Guardian, shows that Cable as leader would do no better than Clegg.

      • anyfool

        Cable starting of as leader at that public level would soon take them down to almost zero.
        His seat is not safe, it is mainly middle class ex Tory who are starting to revert to the Tories or moving to the Greens with a hint of UKIP judging by the polls, the other part of his constituency is left wing middle class, they will never vote Lib Dem again, they hate that they joined up with the Tories to form the government, these people live on bile and spite so much it will be another generation before they will vote Liberal, the Lib Dems will split after the election if not before.
        Either way, leader or not, probably goodbye Vince.

  • Greenslime

    These circular firing squads are good fun, aren’t they!

  • Lady Magdalene

    Rats in a sack ………

  • global city

    Oakeshotte is a horrible magot. It used to drive me mad when the TV news constantly had him on, going on about ‘headbangers’ when he is the biggest one of the lot.

    • telemachus

      Magots sound vaguely regal
      Remind one of epiphany and the Magi
      Perhaps you mean he actually wishes homage to King Nick

      • The Laughing Cavalier

        There’s two of them.

  • goatmince

    Not only are the Liberal Democrats the enablers of a Unionist-led government, the Liberal Democrats are the enabler of a unionist Cameron who is the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom destined to let go of Scotland. Only this Unionist would be able to deliver on that. This Unionist is key to losing Scotland.

    Support this government enabled by Clegg and you will support the end of the United Kingdom. Now watch the pseudo-Unionists go spastic once more …

    • the viceroy’s gin

      …the goat sockpuppet is BACK!

      Well done, lad. It’s been too long for this one.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …and it’s even better as that avatar is of a sheep!

  • LadyDingDong

    It would take a heart of stone to stop from laughing out loud. The libtards tearing themselves apart fills me with a childish joy. Can it get any better? Please.

    • anyfool

      Can it get any better? Please, Yes.
      Apparently Miliband says he will not change over Europe and immigration, no heart of stone here.

      • Terry Field

        No Heart at all

    • telemachus

      Crow not
      We need the LibDems to moderate the radical Tories until the caring team take over on May 8

      • samhol

        I think you need a little ‘care’, brother.

        • Wessex Man

          no no no, what he saying is that once UKip come to power everything will be fine!

    • bwims

      Methinks St. Vince doth protest too much.

    • Inverted Meniscus

      Yes. Labour tearing itself apart. Watching that nest of vermin fighting amongst themselves would be the hottest ticket in town.

      • Gary Wintle

        All modern politicians are vermin. No exceptions.

  • DavidL

    Silly, silly man

  • Smithersjones2013

    One might of guessed it was the verminous Oakeshott……

    • Makroon

      My hunch is that Clegg finally found some intestinal fortitude somewhere, and told Cable, in no uncertain terms, that he either backs Cleggy and ditches the Oakeshott clown, or he will be summarily sacked from his beloved Business Dept.
      Oakeshott is a clown and an amateur, but Cable is a poisonous snake – he has never moved on from being the devious, plotting, Glasgow Labour councillor.

      • Gary Wintle

        Clegg needs to be dumped, he’s Lloyd George all over again.

        • Terry Field

          Come on.
          Lloyd George was a great man of talent and vision. Clegg is an operative; and where is any sign of integrity??????

          • Gary Wintle

            Lloyd George ruthlessly plotted against Asquith, messed up the treaty of Versaile, thus creating fertile ground for his mate, Hitler (whom admired LG, by the way) and destroyed the Liberal party.

            Oakeshott was an amateur compared to LG and his back-stabbing ways.

            • Terry Field

              A silly post.
              By a silly person.
              Learn to spell.
              Learn to put a sentence together.
              Learn to propose an argument rather than make unsupported statements.
              Or bugger off.

      • Terry Field

        I heard Oakshit and I thought he sounded thoroughly unpleasant

    • Gary Wintle

      Oakeshott deserves praise for exposing Project Merlin for the load of utter complete toss that it is. He was proven 100% right when that betrayal of SMEs turned out to be the failure he said it would be.
      When a man is proven right, it augurs well to listen to him.

      Project Merlin, Nick Clegg, Oakeshott is serving the public interest by exposing bad rubbish.
      Apparently Oakeshott is an evil man because he cares about SMEs and cares about his party, and he sees Lloyd George Mk2 destroying his party.

    • Gary Wintle

      There’s nothing verminous about Oakeshott; Clegg is an incompetent leader who has failed at every turn.

      Clegg is a dog that needs to be put down, and Oakeshott was the only one with the balls to do what must be done.

  • Denis_Cooper

    Another unelected legislator-for-life, when will we be shot of them?