A poll conducted by Ipsos Mori has shown that the sudden surge in popularity of Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has not been replicated in the key marginal seat of the Clegg household. Pollsters say that this crucial, hard-to-reach vote may be tiring of the Lib Dem leader’s message, and party strategists are desperately considering how best to counter Mrs Clegg’s threat that the next time she sets eyes on her husband, she will be announcing ‘one or two changes that work for her’.
‘We had a clear agreement that politics would only ever be a hobby,’ fumed Mrs Clegg today. ‘I’ve got my book club, Nick had his Liberal Democrats – that was the deal. It was fine when it was just him and Vince mucking about in the garage playing PM and chancellor a couple of times a week, but now he’s out gallivanting until all hours and the kids never see him. It’s completely gone to his head. It’s as if he thinks he’s Paddy Ashdown or something.’
‘It’s the little changes you pick up on first,’ continued Miriam González Durántez, who married Nick Clegg in 2000. ‘Soon after the first leaders’ debate I noticed that whenever we had a disagreement at home, he’d just sit there muttering to himself in a silly sing-song voice, ‘I agree with Nick’. Then afterwards Chris Huhne would appear to tell the kids that Nick had come out on top and I didn’t have the answers to the family’s problems.'
'But I'm sure it's a mid-life crisis. All of a sudden he comes home with a tour bus and is playing dates all over the country being followed around by groupies. Honestly, some of those voters screaming his name and chanting for proportional representation barely look legal.’
Although Mrs Clegg has previously taken a back seat in the election campaign, she is now determined that her voice is heard by the Lib Dem leadership. ‘So what if I said I’d give up my job if Nick became Prime Minister? I also told him I’d play MP and researcher every Saturday night if United or Wednesday won the Premiership, but that won’t happen either. Now he’s got a new fantasy where I call him to Buckingham Palace and invite him to form a government. It's sickening. I tell you, leader’s debate or not, he’s got some grovelling to do if he wants a day pass for Thursday.’