Top Lib Dem: Bankers’ bonuses are “moment of truth for coalition”

Lord Oakeshott raised the bar on bankers' bonuses last night. He promised strong action and reiterated Nick Clegg's words that the Lib Dems "won't stand idly by" on bank payouts.

Senior Liberal Democrat Lord Oakeshott raised the bar on bankers’ bonuses last night by promising strong action and reiterating Nick Clegg’s words that the Lib Dems “won’t stand idly by” on bank payouts.

Speaking on Newsnight, the Lib Dem peer and Treasury spokesman said:

“This is a real moment of truth for the coalition on fairness. We can’t have a bonus bonanza in the age of austerity.”

Earlier the programme showed a clip of John Mann asking Bob Diamond, chief executive of Barclays:

“on how many occasions have the PM and chancellor met with you personally, looked you in the eye, and asked you to show restraint on the size of your bonus.”

The surprising answer by Mr Diamond: “They have not”. Despite the Conservative party’s tough rhetoric on bankers’ bonuses the reality is hardly surprising. As Next Left reminds us, two years ago David Cameron told a group of bankers including Bob Diamond that the City was in his blood:

“My father was a stockbroker, my grandfather was a stockbroker, my great-grandfather was a stockbroker.”

But Lord Oakeshott, a close ally of Vince Cable, insisted that a conversation had taken place in recent weeks between Vince Cable and Bob Diamond which “can only be described as an arid discussion … there was very little meeting of minds”. The Daily Express’ Chief Political Commentator Patrick O’Flynn was quick to spot the political significance of the exchange by tweeting:

“Oakeshott on Newsnight dynamite on bankers, will be consequences tomorrow. So outspoken with hints of Cable briefing … now Cable must back it up with action or look like a total tool.”

17 Responses to “Top Lib Dem: Bankers’ bonuses are “moment of truth for coalition””

  1. Ma

    RT @leftfootfwd: Top Lib Dem: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghmigC

  2. Theo C. Cupier

    RT @leftfootfwd: Top Lib Dem: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghmigC

  3. Emma Jackson Stuart

    RT @leftfootfwd: Top Lib Dem: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghmigC > & tuition fees weren't?!

  4. Boris Watch

    RT @unslugged: RT @leftfootfwd Top LD: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghmigC

  5. reded

    “My father was a stockbroker, my grandfather was a stockbroker, my great-grandfather was a stockbroker.”

    It’s a coup. I fear we have lost the war.

  6. Darren Johnson

    Are LibDems really serious about restraint on bankers bonuses?@leftfootforward //bit.ly/ho5p4j #ukuncut #protest

  7. Anon E Mouse

    Will – Is this until the next “moment of truth” for the coalition?

    I remember the last government where every speech from the PM was his “most important”. Until the next one.

    Why can’t Labour realise that the coalition is here for the long haul and the next general election is in 2015? If the government did collapse the Labour Party couldn’t afford to run an election campaign anyway and the Tories would simply win an outright majority.

    In the long run the Lib-Dem’s have to keep going now and by the short term loss of popularity, which the government will get in any event because of the cuts and a week being a long time in politics the fact the bankers get bonuses will be long forgotten.

    Especially when the banks are sold off in some pre-election give away in 2014. If making the shareholdings of the taxpayer more valuable means those private, legitimate, taxpaying companies pay bonuses so what? 50% comes back in any event.

    I could run the party better than this and Labour really needs to start thinking strategically in life because these silly short term statements from them are not going to result in a death by a thousand cuts for this government because only politics fans are listening and they are not Worcester Woman or Mondeo Man…

    (PS I though you’d moved on fella?)

  8. Fiona Radic

    RT @DarrenJohnsonAM: Are LibDems really serious about restraint on bankers bonuses?@leftfootforward //bit.ly/ho5p4j #ukuncut #protest

  9. Michaeljon

    Cameron to City: “My father was a stockbroker, my grandfather was a stockbroker, my great-grandfather was a stockbroker.” //ow.ly/3Coyu

  10. L DTUC

    RT @leftfootfwd: Top Lib Dem: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghmigC

  11. matthew fox

    I wish Anon E Mouse would move on, his hatred of the author and Miliband is boring.

  12. Anon E Mouse

    Matthew Fox – That is now the second time you have lied about me in a public forum and you have made the same deceitful claims on both occasions. Ed Miliband isn’t worth a second thought – he’s useless but (again) do not accuse me of having hatred for any man.

    If you think I have any dislike of any of the contributors personally on this fine blog please read any of my previous posts or just ask them. I may vehemently disagree with their articles but as possibly the longest and certainly most regular poster to the blog I can assure you that you speak with a forked tongue.

    If you want groupthink Matthew head over to Labourlist. Your problem, like a lot of Labour supporters, is you know in your heart Miliband us a dud. Just watch the looks on the backbenchers and his shadow cabinet collegues.

    Remember, like the members of the Labour Party, only 15% of that shadow cabinet actually voted for him…

  13. Mr. Sensible

    I read in the Guardian that Clegg wants to make disputes between Lib Dems and Tories more public!

    Should be worth watching…

  14. Spir.Sotiropoulou

    RT @leftfootfwd: Top Lib Dem: Bankers' bonuses are "moment of truth for coalition" //bit.ly/ghCH7G

  15. Look Left – Miliband hails "first step in a long journey" as Labour hold Oldham | Left Foot Forward

    […] Oakeshott, the senior Liberal Democrat peer, who described bankers’ bonuses as a “moment of truth” for the coalition. Reiterating Nick […]

  16. A. Victim

    If bankers bonuses were linked to the banks share price then they would not get a bonus, because even the best banks shares have not moved much over 15 years.This is not surprising as half of the banks profits are skimmed off in bonus payments. I have never been paid twice.
    These Arrogant, Ignorant,Greedy, bankers are threatening to go elsewhere.
    Let them go and wreck some other country and we would not have to help them out every 10 years.
    G.Brown should have put stringent conditions on before any loans or just let them go and then take them over. Here we have the worst of both worlds, we own most of the British banks but have no control over them.
    All of these banks are licensed deposit takers and are licensed by our government to run their bank in a correct and proper manner. They need reminding of this in a much more forthright manner.
    The electorate has not forgiven them and as soon as the marriage of Nick and Dave flounders then we will have the right to vote on their performance on this matter.All 3 top parties have let down their voters on this matter.

  17. Coalition fails "moment of truth" on bankers' bonuses | Left Foot Forward

    […] month, Lord Oakeshott described the Project Merlin negotiations as “a real moment of truth for the coalition on fairness“. The peer has tonight resigned over the Government’s deal on banking saying […]

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