Iain Dale points towards an interview for the Times with Simon Hughes, which shows how his attitude reversed within a day.
'I tried always to take the line that private life was always going to be private life. And the more robust comments [denying he was gay] I had made in the first week of the leadership campaign were really just to put that fence in place. What I said was I hope not untrue, but it clearly may have been misleading and was misleading.'As I note below, he may be strictly correct in saying that he is not homosexual, but we are getting into splitting the finest of differences here. By any reasonable measure, he did not tell the truth. He did not merely mislead, he did not evade the question and change the subject - a key tactic for any politician in an interview (you can spot it when they say 'But the real question, John/Jeremy/David/Jonathan, is....').
He only admitted his lies when the media obtained proof that he was lying - although he's trying to take the high ground and pretend that he was forced to admit it after The Sun found proof that he had rung a gay chat line. A comment on Guido's blog reveals that his deception goes beyond 'misleading' and dates back some way into the 80s...
When someone on C4's open-ended (for insomniacs and freaks) chat-show, "After Dark",remarked that the homophobic campaign in Bermondsey was ironic given Hughes's sexuality, everyone on the show nodded and moved on. Within minutes, Hughes had been told and was on the blower to Charlotte St., and the presenter had to do his full legal apology schtick.So, far from it being 'no big deal' and 'everyone knew anyway', Hughes has been assiduously policing his straight image for 25 years.Remember how the Lib Dems were equally forthright in threatening legal action when anyone suggested that Chuckles might like a drink or two?
And they have the nerve to accuse Labour of spin?