Nick Clegg’s gong is in recognition of his time as deputy prime minister in the Coalition Government from 2010 to 2015, the citation said
MPs have raged over the decision to hand Nick Clegg a knighthood for his time in government, as confirmed by the honours list released tonight.
The former Lib Dem leader was recognised for his time as deputy prime minister in the Coalition Government from 2010 to 2015.
But a Labour MP quipped the honour must be for ‘services to breaking up communities’, while Brexiteers claimed he only received the gong for ‘services to the European Union’.
The honour was first reported by the Daily Mail on Tuesday, leading Labour’s Anna Turley to comment: ‘So…. knighthood for Nick Clegg – for services to driving people out of their family homes and into poverty & breaking up communities.’
Brexiteer Andrew Bridgen complained that Mr Clegg had only received the honour for his pro-EU campaigning.
‘The only thing I can think he would get a knighthood for would be for services to the European Union and I would’ve have thought that should have disqualified him,’ he told The Sun.
‘Its increasingly hard to justify a lot of political honours, including Mr Clegg’s.’
Meanwhile, more than 50,000 people signed a petition to have the honour reversed, branding Mr Clegg a ‘failed politician’.
The citation pointed to his advocacy of increases to the personal tax allowance, the pupil premium and help for disadvantaged children.
The citation pointed to his advocacy of increases to the personal tax allowance, the pupil premium and help for disadvantaged children
But the knighthood is controversial given that Mr Clegg is an arch Remainer and that his party has been showered with honours in recent years, with knighthoods for Vince Cable and Ed Davey, who both lost their seats in 2015 after serving in the Cabinet.
Mr Clegg held on but lost the Sheffield Hallam seat he held for 12 years in June. He has called for a second referendum and written a book called How To Stop Brexit.
Another former Lib Dem Cabinet minister, Danny Alexander, was given a knighthood after losing his Scottish seat in 2015, although he has not returned as an MP.
Former pensions minister Steve Webb was knighted a year ago. Mr Clegg, who lost his Sheffield Hallam seat in June, had to wait longer.
In his book on Brexit, Mr Clegg wrote: ‘There is nothing remotely inevitable about Brexit – except that it will be deeply damaging if it happens.’
He infuriated Eurosceptics when he travelled to Brussels to meet EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier.
He and two other Remain supporters, veteran Tory Ken Clarke and Labour peer Lord Adonis, were accused of trying to interfere in Brexit talks.
Mr Clegg has called for Britain to hold a second referendum on the final Brexit deal agreed with Brussels.
In September, he said there should be a second vote because those who had voted Leave were dying off.
He said the ‘high point’ of support had passed because ‘the oldest voters voted for Brexit in the largest numbers’.
Mr Clegg held on but lost the Sheffield Hallam seat he held for 12 years in June. He has called for a second referendum and written a book called How To Stop Brexit