Even the Lib Dems can't agree why they broke their fees pledge

Equalities minister Jo Swinson contradicts Clegg's tuition fees apology.

In his tuition fees apology, Nick Clegg made it clear that he thought the Lib Dems shouldn't have made the pledge in the first place. This was, he said, because there was "no money around". I've already explained why he was wrong to use this defence, but it's worth noting that not everyone in his party has got the message.

Earlier this afternoon, equalities minister Jo Swinson said:

Had we had enough seats to form a majority Liberal Democrat government, we would have implemented our manifesto.

If even the Lib Dems can't agree why they broke their pledge, it's hard to see why anyone should take them seriously.

New equalities minister Jo Swinson with Nick Clegg earlier this year. Photograph: Getty Images.

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.

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Tory Brexiter Daniel Hannan: Leave campaign never promised "radical decline" in immigration

The voters might not agree...

BBC Newsnight on Twitter

It was the Leave campaign's pledge to reduce EU immigration that won it the referendum. But Daniel Hannan struck a rather different tone on last night's Newsnight. "It means free movement of labour," the Conservative MEP said of the post-Brexit model he envisaged. An exasperated Evan Davis replied: “I’m sorry we’ve just been through three months of agony on the issue of immigration. The public have been led to believe that what they have voted for is an end to free movement." 

Hannan protested that EU migrants would lose "legal entitlements to live in other countries, to vote in other countries and to claim welfare and to have the same university tuition". But Davis wasn't backing down. "Why didn't you say this in the campaign? Why didn't you say in the campaign that you were wanting a scheme where we have free movement of labour? Come on, that's completely at odds with what the public think they have just voted for." 

Hannan concluded: "We never said there was going to be some radical decline ... we want a measure of control". Your Mole suspects many voters assumed otherwise. If immigration is barely changed, Hannan and others will soon be burned by the very fires they stoked. 

I'm a mole, innit.