Lembit Opik - latest news, breaking stories and comment - The Independent
Life and Style Bercow's reliably indiscreet daily missives are notably absent from cyberspace

The costly libel judgment against the Speaker’s wife Sally Bercow has been widely seen as a timely warning for other would-be controversialists on social media.

Pandora: Balls and Bercow ready for a festive party piece

Rudolph, fetch those reins! Someone is striving to be a very good little boy this Christmas.

Lembit who? Opik dropped from the record

Liberal Democrat MP Lembit Opik will complain to the Commons authorities today after his name was missed off a key internet search tool.

Pandora: Howard and Field find common ground

Following in the footsteps of Tony Blair, two rather different House of Commons veterans are, we hear, to enter into the interfaith arena.

Lembit Opik: You Ask The Questions

The Liberal Democrat MP answers your questions, such as 'Should Megrahi have been released?' and 'Do you have any dating tips?'

Pandora: Politics behind the scenes at Newsnight

Nick Robinson's stint fronting Newsnight may have proved a successful experiment at the time of printing, but it seems that he would be wise not to get overly comfortable in the hot seat quite yet.

Pandora: Potter magic given the brush-off by Lib Dems

As celebrity endorsements to political parties go, Daniel Radcliffe's declaration of loyalty to the Liberal Democrats appeared, on first impressions at least, to be a useful one.

Matthew Norman: Comical Desi's sword of truth

These are not words I expected to write without some potent psychotropic substance seeping through an intravenous drip, but Richard Desmond becomes a role model to us all. The fearlessness he showed in donning the Jonathan Aitken Memorial Suit of Armour to fight Tom Bower for his good name - and on the notoriously murderous terrain that is Mr Justice Eady's courtroom - speaks for itself. So does the plain spoken reverence for truth displayed in the witness box. Above all, though, it's the Corinthian sunniness that seems such a useful paradigm for troublesome times. The post-verdict statement posted on his own Express web site echoes one of modern history's most resilient wartime orators. Churchill, perhaps, in 1940. Or possibly Comical Ali in 2003 as the coalition tanks rolled into Baghdad. "His biggest mistake," declared Richard of Mr Bower, "was in thinking I would not go to court to fight to uphold my reputation."

Pandora: MP with a sideline in West End comedy

In what may be the most creative post-expenses show of bravado yet, the Labour MP Tom Levitt – ranked eighth in recent accounts of the most claim-happy MPs – is to cut his teeth as a stand-up comic with a high-profile slot in the West End.

The Great <i>IoS</i> Expenses Quiz: Have you been paying attention?

We know it's hard, as we hit Day 45 of the expenses saga, to follow it all. As a catch-up service, John Rentoul provides his guide to what has been learned last week, in the form of a GCSE multiple-choice test (answers at bottom of page)

Terence Blacker: Time to inject a bit of pizzazz into the Cabinet

The people out there are angry, say the politicians. In a floundering attempt to play the sincerity card which has served them so well in the past, they turn their sheepish, plastic bag-claiming, moat-clearing, manure-collecting, property-flipping eyes to the camera, and bleat about the system and how voters are terribly, terribly angry.

Observations: Come to the butterfly ball

What do Kate Winslet, Ricky Gervais and Tony Blair have in common? Aside from a propensity for making embarrassing speeches, that is. The answer, unexpectedly, lies with butterflies.

Lib Dem MPs hit by latest revelations

The Liberal Democrats were dragged into the controversy over parliamentary expenses for the first time last night when 12 of their MPs were accused of making questionable claims.

Pandora: Image gurus jostle over Sir Fred's comeback

Implausible as it may seem, former RBS boss Sir Fred Goodwin may not be doomed to quite the life of notoriety that Pandora had first assumed. Rather the opposite, in fact: it would seem that the PR industry is positively overflowing with big-wigs jostling for the chance to lend the country's least popular banker a hand.

Some expenses reforms agreed for MPs after climbdown

MPs agreed piecemeal reforms of their expenses today - but only after forcing another Government climbdown over the need to overhaul their second homes allowances.

Sarah Teather: You ask the questions

Liberal Democrat MP for Brent East answers your questions including: Is your party even relevant? And should a Lib-Dem ever sit in a Labour cabinet?
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