Justice Secretary Ken Clarke has refused to apologise for being a Conservative but has accepted that some of his political affiliations may have been ill-judged and has vowed to choose his policies more carefully in future.
The MP for Rushcliffe, famous for falling asleep during George Osborne’s recent budget, has come in for heavy criticism after appearing to suggest that there were different types of politics, some cutbacks were more serious than others and that Britain was asking for it anyway.
‘Some policies are not always as serious as others, somebody cries ‘Tory!’ and straight away you’re condemned without people fully understanding the facts. When we came to power at the last election this country was sick and tired of Labour and was desperate for someone else to turn to. Combined with fears over the global financial crisis Britain was just asking to be shafted. But it’s not like we attacked them in a dark alley and simply started to savagely cut public services, the electorate invited us in, so that’s not so bad. Well, they didn’t completely invite us in, but once we got together with the Lib Dems they had no choice.’
After his remarks were met with a fierce backlash Mr Clarke has been forced to admit that he may not have expressed himself very well and confirmed that he considers all policies to be serious, even those proposed by Liberal Democrat MPs.
With the Prime Minister now coming under heavy pressure to sack the Lord Chancellor, David Cameron issued a statement in response to the criticism.
‘I think Ken Clarke’s remarks have been taken out of context and twisted by the media, the only thing he is guilty of is a poor choice of words. Of course everybody in parliament considers all policies to be extremely serious and to suggest otherwise is completely absurd. Now we need to all pull together and work out how to put this unfortunate affair behind us by blaming it on Nick Clegg.’