Lib Dem watch: sign of the times

Once, it would have been overlooked.  But today the new deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats is announced with suitable fanfare on page four of the Times: he gets a single paragraph in the “news in brief” column.

His entire purpose in life is summed up with a single, memorable, sentence: “Simon Hughes was elected as the Liberal Democrat deputy leader last night and given the role of reassuring the party’s unsettled elements.”

It reminds us of a newspaper cartoon published in the early autumn a few years ago. Two Taliban leaders are crouched on the side of a mountain watching a massive battle taking place in the valley below.  One says to the other, “I wonder what they’re debating today at the Liberal Democrat conference.”

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