‘People think that I’m quite blunt,’ joked Vince Cable to Steve Richards at a fringe event this evening. The Business Secretary was being interviewed on his job, his relationship with Nick Clegg, and coalition politics, and he certainly made no effort to tone down that bluntness.
There were ‘senior Conservatives’, he said who were also concerned about the prospect of another housing bubble. In the Cabinet? ‘Yes – and outside,’ he replied. He said:
‘We are already discussing this in government, it’s an issue I’m not the only person who is concerned. There are senior Conservatives…’
These sorts of discussions were part of Cable’s emphasis on ‘sustainable’ growth, which he said it was important for the Lib Dems to make their own, rather than simply appearing to be a nicer party than the Conservatives. But when Richards asked whether his speech this afternoon did indeed suggest, as I blogged earlier, that Cable was advocating a different strategy to that pursued by Clegg, the Business Secretary said: ‘I think you are trying to find differences that do not exist. We are on the same page on that, don’t worry about it.’
Having given the immigration bond a good stab already, Cable went in for the kill again this evening, saying that this was not an agreed policy by any means, saying: ‘There will be a negotiating process, and I will be very strong in pushing for concessions’.Tags: Housing, Lib Dem conference 2013, Vince Cable