My first proper Paddy Ashdown memory was in the 1992 election. Paxman was giving him a manifesto grilling about whether the voters of Yeovil were crying out for the abolition of section 28 and equalisation of the age of consent.
At a time when it was far from popular - the ink was
still wet from Section 28 coming into law remember - Paddy put him back
in his box as "we don't campaign for these things based on whether they are
popular but because they are the right thing to do".
I already knew I was too left wing for Labour and the Tories, but it helped nail down which way to vote a couple of weeks later.