Take the following quotes:
“[The Conservative general election campaign] was utterly ruthless, a black widow operation.”
“It could have been even worse [if the Tories had also targeted seats like Tom Brake’s].”
“The key question is why no one saw the Tory attack on us [in the general election] coming. Everyone is pointing the finger at someone else.”
The quotes themselves are all fairly unexceptional and reflect views widely held and expressed in the party. But what’s odd about them is that when they appeared in The Independent yesterday, they were all given anonymously.
There are occasions when the choice of anonymity brings benefits to the person uttering the words. But anonymity when all you’re saying is “it could have been worse”?
Heck, you’d be hard pressed to find any Liberal Democrat, or indeed any non-Liberal Democrat, or indeed anyone overseas with only the most fleeting knowledge of British politics, who wouldn’t be happy to say in public “it could have been worse”.
To have found the one who will only say it anonymously is top notch sleuthing, if also rather pointless.