After Richard Nixon had lost election to the governorship of California in November 1962 he told reporters, “You don’t have Nixon to kick around any more, because, gentlemen, this is my last press conference”. But he came back as president in 1968.

Election day yesterday was probably the last time trade, industry & competition minister Ebrahim Patel could plausibly have intervened in the fate of our economy. His decision not to seek another term in office put me in mind of Nixon. Who will I have to kick around any more? Will he come back too?..

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