Belfast Telegraph

I’d like to take A Journey round the private lives of our MLAs

By Lindy McDowell

Since the reviewers have had sight of Tony Blair’s at times oddly Mills and Boonish memoir, A Journey, much scorn has been expressed by commentators about this new political trend to tell-all.

To tell all not just about Cabinet room bickering but, in Blair’s case, about his sexual “devouring” of Cherie, his bowel habits on foreign visits, his attempts (as a teenager) to get into a girlfriend’s sleeping bag, his own drinking, his son Euan’s drinking, the circumstances of another son’s conception

Too much information cry the critics! I don‘t know ...

Looking around our home-grown batch of political “personalities” what is actually striking is how very little we know about so many of their private lives.

The House of Robinson apart, of course. (And who knows what we may yet learn from that story?)

But some other well-known politicos here keep private their private lives in a way that would do proud the former Soviet politburo.

Never mind use their families as political props, like Brezhnev, there is no outward evidence that some even have families. As for “devouring” — the only example of that they’ll admit to is eating the bake off political opponents.

What they do in the bathroom? Absolutely no chance of disclosure there either. They’ll deny ever having been in the loo. One even denies ever having been in the IRA ...

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