London: A secret dossier on a TV debate strategy for Britain's Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, found in the back of a taxi, advises him to "speak more slowly" and use "shorter, simpler answers".
The document shows that Clegg was coached to copy the style of Conservative Party leader David Cameron, The Sun reported Wednesday.
The dossier, titled "I'm Not Here Right Now", was found after last week's first TV debate.
"DC (David Cameron) talks a lot in the language of values. We need to do this," it said and warned Clegg to "avoid unilateral disarmament implication".
The document, left in the back of a cab Thursday at about 10.30 p.m., was authored by John Sharkey, chairman of the Liberal Democrat election campaign team and Clegg's strategic communications adviser.
"It's extraordinary that someone... could just leave this stuff in a taxi. It's very sloppy to say the least and I thought people should know. That's why I've handed it to The Sun.
"The guy was on the phone during the journey and I think he was talking to Nick Clegg. He kept telling him how well he had done in the debate. He was quite theatrical in the way he spoke," the driver was quoted as saying.
The dossier charged Clegg with speaking too quickly, using too much jargon and being too hesitant.
He is told that during debates he needs "more passion/conviction" and to "speak more slowly". He is also urged to "look more relaxed" and use "shorter, simpler answers".
A spokeswoman for Clegg said: "It is private property and we'd like it back, please."
First Published: Wednesday, April 21, 2010, 12:57