Vince Cable refuses to rule out luring Michael Heseltine from Tories over Jeremy Corbyn-Brexit row

Vince Cable was coy when asked if he'd consider poaching Lord Heseltine for the Lib Dems

Vince Cable was coy when asked if he'd consider poaching Lord Heseltine for the Lib Dems

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Lib Dem leader Sir Vince Cable has told talkRADIO he would be "amazed" if his former colleague Lord Heseltine quit the Tories, but refused to rule out working with him in future.

Several Tories have called for the whip to be withdrawn from Heseltine after he said a Jeremy Corbyn government might be preferable to Brexit.

Cable, speaking to Mike Graham on our mid-morning show today, was asked whether he would consider poaching Heseltine for the Lib Dems to take advantage of the current row.

In response, Cable said he had a huge amount of respect for Heseltine, having worked with the Tory grandee while he was business secretary in the Coalition government.

He added that he "would be absolutely amazed if [Heseltine] chose to leave the Conservative Party" but said his party is "perfectly willing to work with like-minded people in the Labour Party and the Conservatives if it's conducive to the national interest."

Turning to talk of another general election, Cable said "I'm not expecting one. I don't think the Government... the old saying, turkeys don't vote for Christmas, applies here."

On Brexit Cable reiterated his party's approach, saying that "we respect the results of the last referendum" but believe that once the results of the negotiations are known "the British public should be offered a choice. Are you happy with what's now on offer, the big payment of £40-50 billion that we're going to have to pay out to leave, together with what looks like it's going to be a very skeletal arrangement on trade? Or do yuo want to exit from Brexit?" 

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