Clegg's new show

The deputy prime minister Nick Clegg will be braving calls from the public this morning as part of a new weekly radio phone-in. The Lib Dem leader will be on LBC at 9am every Thursday, starting from today. Some are seeing it as a bid to boost his popularity.

It will be the first time such a senior government figure has agreed to a weekly grilling by listeners.Mr Clegg said: "I'm doing this because I don't think politicians get to hear enough from people directly."

"You can't do the right thing in government unless you keep in touch with how people are thinking and feeling."

His first phone-in comes in the week of the Government's Mid-Term Review, which was seen as an attempt to relaunch the coalition at the halfway point in its planned five-year term.

But the initiative was plunged into chaos after it emerged an audit of the coalition's record in power had not been published.It only came to light when one of the Prime Minister's aides was spotted carrying a document which suggested publication had been delayed to avoid unfavourable coverage.