Monday, December 03, 2007

Strictly Come Dancing and the Lib Dem leadership

I have just got back from Westminster after forming part of a panel of Lib Dem bloggers who interviewed Vince Cable earlier this evening.

I shall be writing about Vince in Friday's Liberal Democrat News, and no doubt other bloggers will post there impressions before that. You will not be surprised to know that out conversation touched upon Vince's enthusiasm for ballroom dancing.

There is an irony here. Last summer there was an ill-fated attempt to "put the zing into Ming" under the aegis of the PR guru and former Liberal candidate Gavin Grant. As I wrote on Guardian Unlimited at the time:

When Gavin Grant's appointment was announced, a Lib Dem MP told the press that Grant had gone up to Campbell hotel room where he was preparing for a speech and "found him with a plate of fish and chips on his lap watching Strictly Come Dancing". The unnamed MP added: "That is the side people never see".

Which is hardly surprising, as that side does not exist. While Campbell's redoubtable wife Elspeth has a taste for demotic television - she famously completed a dissertation on the matriarchs of Coronation Street - she does not seem the type to take kindly to fish and chips in her hotel bedroom.

Besides, the Conservative blogger Iain Dale has examined the TV schedules during this year's Lib Dem spring conference, when this incident is supposed to have taken place, and found that Strictly Come Dancing was not being shown - and nor was Strictly Dance Fever or any other such programme.

Now we have a leader who does watch Strictly Come Dancing and would even like to appear on it one day. It's funny how things turn out.

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