Given that Cable is in charge of the universities brief - the most important part of his otherwise non-job - you can expect him to want to protect it from cuts. But to lobby openly like this is not something that Theresa May or Liam Fox would do. Cable had best behave himself. As Cameron might remind him, we're all in this together.
UPDATE: As I suspected, some CoffeeHousers seem to agree that the taxpayer should be forced to fork out more on scientific research than we currently do for the entire diplomatic corps. This takes us into a new realm about what the government should and should not do - another blog post entirely, but I thought I would, once again, yield the floor to Sam Seaborne:
Joey Lucas: "The Federal Government shouldn't be directing scientific research."
Sam Seaborne: "Why?"
JL: "Because you stink at it. 'If it was up to the NIH to cure polio through a centrally directed program. . . You'd have the best iron lung in the world but not a polio vaccine.'"
SS: "When did you get an M.D.?"
JL "I was just quoting Samuel Broder. . . . The former director of the National Cancer Institute."