Here in Westminster we are all brushing up on the names of Lib Dem PPSs, as we try and work out who might quit the payroll vote over fees. The latest is that Michael Crockart, PPS to Michael Moore – who is himself the most anonymous Lib Dem Cabinet minister – looks set to walk. But one of the better known Lib Dem ministers has now put his head above the parapet. Norman Baker has told the BBC that quitting over fees is one ‘option’ but he hasn’t yet made up his mind. (Oddly enough, these comments seem to have been made on the South East edition of the Politics Show on Sunday, but only just reported).
Baker has always been a maverick. When his new Tory colleagues at the Department of Transport asked Nick Clegg’s office to step in and keep him in line after Baker went off message, they were met with laughter as Clegg’s lot declared that they had never managed to control Baker.