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We’re in a post-truth age of politics. And just to prove it – here are 14 of the best euphemisms used by politicians to avoid admitting they told lies:

  1. It wasn’t a lie, it was an aspiration
    – Chris Grayling on Brexit NHS lies

2. It wasn’t a lie, it was an extrapolation
– Iain Duncan Smith on Brexit NHS lies

3. They were not lies, they were a series of possibilities
– Iain Duncan Smith on Brexit lies

4. I didn’t lie, I was tired
– Boris Johnson on freedom of movement after Brexit

5. He didn’t lie, he just didn’t know
– Donald Trump campaign manager on one of his myriad of lies

6. I didn’t lie, I short-circuited
– Hillary Clinton on email controversy

7. They weren’t lies. They were false assumptions
– Republican Senator Dick Lugar on Bush’s Iraq lies

8. It wasn’t a lie, it was a mischaracterization of the intelligence
– US Intelligence Committee on Bush’s Iraq lies

9. It was not an accurate description, but it wasn’t a lie
– Chilcot report on Blair’s Iraq lies

10. It was a terminological inexactitude, not a lie
– Winston Churchill during argument over slavery

11. It wasn’t lying, it was being economical with the truth
– Sir Robert Armstrong during Thatcher government’s attempts to ban the Spycatcher book

12. It wasn’t a lie, it was a misstatement of awareness
– Lib Dem MP Alistair Carmichael on lies about Nicola Sturgeon

13. It was an unwise commitment, not a lie
– Lib Dem Vince Cable on pledge not to raise tuition fees

14. It wasn’t a lie, it was a mistake
– Lib Dem Nick Clegg on his pledge not to raise tuition fees

euphemisms