|Cable's bid to block George Osborne Posted by Jamie at 9 00 PM on Saturday, May 15|
The Lib Dem favourite said he couldn’t work with the inexperienced Tory — and wanted to grab the job for himself.
If he couldn’t have it, he said heavyweight Ken Clarke should be put in charge of the Treasury. But David Cameron refused to sacrifice his best pal.After failing to land a Treasury job, Mr Cable hoped to be put in charge of a crackdown on bankers, whom he has dubbed “Scargills in pinstripes” — but it was left with Mr Osborne.
When Mr Cable refused to serve as Mr Osborne’s No2 he got the Business Department instead. The job of Chief Secretary to the Treasury went to Lib Dem David Laws.
The revelation is one of the first signs of cracks in the Tory-Lib coalition.
It has also emerged that Mr Cable repeatedly told Gordon Brown he didn’t want to team up with the Conservatives.
And Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg yesterday admitted the deal has caused division and “offence” in his party ranks. He said: “There are those who think this shouldn’t have happened.”
Mr Cable has blasted Mr Osborne’s “schoolboy economics” and warned Tory policies would “drive public finances into the ground”. In a devastating attack after Mr Osborne set out his plans for government, he said: “Osborne’s latest economic commentary shows how out of depth he is when it comes to the important economic issues.”
Today Mr Clegg faces his party at a special conference in Birmingham, amid complaints he has surrendered too many key Lib Dem policies.
DAVID CAMERON wants to hire a LABOUR ex-minister to advise on how to tackle poverty. Frank Field is among a number of outside figures the PM is seeking to recruit to bolster his team.