“Giggling women elicit indiscrete bragging from powerful man shocker”

It’s not even a new twist on an old story. Poor old Vince Cable. Fell for a classic sting more worthy of the tabloids than the DailyTelegraph. His power base reduced, his reputation diminished, the brim of his hat pulled lower than ever but he’s still hanging on to his cabinet post. Cable must be cursing under his breath and wincing at the thought of being in the headlines at the same time as he dances around the floor on the Christmas edition of Strictly Come Dancing. But if the Telegraph thought it was coming out of this well, it hasn’t. Its release of selective information – selectively omitting the parts of Cable’s comments which suit its business – has created a bad impression. The winners? Why its Mr Jeremy Hunt and, of course, Mr Rupert Murdoch. So that’s all good then.

There’s plenty of coverage on this story elsewhere, for example some people called the BBC are covering it extensively, and so we’re not going over the points here. The event has put Twickenhan’s high profile MP into the spotlight he could have done without, but on the plus side there have been lots of shots of Twickenham on the telly.

Will it affect residents’ views of their MP? Yep. His reputation has certainly taken a big knock on the national stage (geddit?) but at the same time he’s generally well regarded for supporting local issues. No doubt he’ll be a little more guarded in his constituency surgeries in future. Will it all be forgotten by the next election. Let’s hope that by then people are focused on bigger issues than the fact that a coaltion governement has internal divisions. But of course if Vince Cable decides to “go nuclear” then that election may come sooner rather than later. Or with his armoury de-activated maybe that’s just an empty boast?