It was in his first government job as minister of competitiveness at the Department for Trade and Industry. In a speech at the Further Education Development Agency in 1999, he said of the Chancellor: "I wouldn't say Gordon Brown is mean but, when he drives under a bridge, he turns his windscreen wipers off."
We're pleased we'll still be enjoying Alan's one-liners now that he's not going to be deputy prime minister - at least for the time being. And who better than the former general secretary of the Union of Communication Workers (the postie's union) to "deliver" education policy.
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