November 1st, 2012

Lobby Wars: Throw Winnett Out of the Lobby

On Wednesday both the Mail and Telegraph splashed with the story of Energy Minister John Hayes declaring “enough is enough” over wind farms. The Mail’s report was labelled as an exclusive and their political editor James Chapman noted in his piece that Hayes’ remarks came from a private interview. Yet mysteriously the Telegraph had the same story with quotations in its first edition. How come?

It seems the Telegraph got sight of Chapman’s raw, unsubbed copy – Hayes had only spoken to him. Mail sources point out that their version said:

Even if a minority of what’s in the system is built we are going to reach our 2020 target,’ he said. ‘I’m saying enough is enough.’

The quote is mysteriously longer in the Telegraph version:

‘If you look at what has been built, what has consent and what is in the planning system, much of it will not get through and will be rejected. Even if a minority of what’s in the system is built we are going to reach our 2020 target,’ Mr Hayes said. ‘I’m saying enough is enough.’

One disgruntled Mail hack points out that “It’s common practice in the lobby to get wind of things and seek to do a spoiler or cobble something together with source quotes but to actually barefacedly steal the copy and use the quotes as your own is unprecedented in my experience.”

So what happened? Did the Telegraph’s Political Editor Robert Winnett find a copy of Chapman’s story on a Commons printer? Nope. Guido understands that Chapman did print out his story but took it home in his briefcase.

Did a Telegraph spy at the Mail leak the story to Winnett? Possibly. Mail HQ is now in a state of high security. Or was the Telegraph tipped off by veteran eco-sceptic Christopher Booker, who wrote a feature linked to the Hayes story in Wednesday’s Mail? Booker, though a long-time columnist for the Telegraph, is surely too experienced a hack to hand an exclusive to the Mail’s arch rival in that way.

Some argue that Winnett is in breach of the first rule of the Lobby – by shamelessly lifting the story he has breached his “duty to the Lobby as a whole, in that he should do nothing to prejudice the communal life of the Lobby..” and should be thrown out. Angry phone-calls were exchanged between executives at both papers yesterday with Ben Brogan – the former Mail man and now Telegraph deputy editor – being accused of “theft”. Brogan is said to be claiming it was “serendipity” and is not taking Guido’s calls this morning…


  1. 1
    Racial Austerity says:

  2. 2
    Sophie says:

    Oh. Interesting. Lobby hacks. Righto.

  3. 3
    Bluebottle says:

    We dont want any more windmills .

    Can we have turbans in the River Seven please .

  4. 4
    Sandra in Accounts says:

    For goodness sake woman put down the fork.

    You are consuming more than you need.

    I believe your access to free food on the taxpayer & free BBC money via the taxpayer has turned you into a glutton.

    Please think of the poor Diane, & for women everywhere. You have a duty not to be such a hypocritical gluttonous wretch.

  5. 5
    Dave says:

    Always going on about race that fat arse cow is. Is she some sort of racist?

  6. 6
  7. 7
    Peter Swindon says:

    Yes. hates old whitey even though she has been given every opportunity in this country.

    Still not enough a for a professional hypocrit like her – she makes her living race baiting and rabble rousing.

    If she were white she would be in prison for incitement.

  8. 8
    Mark Oaten says:


  9. 9
    Hugh Janus says:

    I prefer to describe Christopher Booker is an eco-realist, and an outstanding one at that. He his light years ahead of our pygmy-brained politicians.

  10. 10
    Hugh Janus says:

    He is…

  11. 11
    Sir George Young says:

    “the homeless are the sort of people you trip over on your way back from the Opera.”

  12. 12

    The first rule about the sainted lobby club is you don’t talk about the sainted lobby club

  13. 13
    Dr Livingstone says:

    You’ve not been to Hackney, have you?

  14. 14

    That one nation bollocks didn’t last long then.

  15. 15
    Junior Asprin says:

    I think she is refering to the Thin Skinned community, which spans a whole left wing spectrum, including very rich MP’s, Lawyers and Public Sector Executives

  16. 16
    White Noise says:

    Oh and Local Authority cuts are not affecting the white community then?

    You my dear are the type of leftie inverse racist that should be given a gastric band.

  17. 17
    bergen says:

    Kiddies’ playtime in the lobby.

  18. 18
    Guardians are destroying our land. says:

    Guardianistas and Beeboids all live in exclusive areas of North London.

    They believe nay demand that their electricity be generated by windmills . To that end they are blighting the rest of the country with giant bat killing bird mincing mind blowing windmills.

  19. 19
    The ex-Carlton PRick now Posing as PM says:

    One agrees entirely with any jolly thing that prevents the Common People interfering with one’s remarkable plans for scams and Wind Farms.

    It’s a chink of comfort in a far from comfortable day. Dashed well hardly slept last night – and Sam kept asking what was wrong!

    Tony never had these problems – why do I?

  20. 20
    Yawn says:

    Westminster froth and bubble. How interesting.

  21. 21
    Hold (Steal) the Front Page says:

    Rats biting other rats. Hardly news is it?

  22. 22
    Ed M says:

    So, what happened to the one nation?

  23. 23
    genghiz the kahn says:

    What has Diane Abbott achieved in her career?

    Is she too thick to be a PPS?
    Is she incapable of taking up the post of a junior minister?
    Is she so dim that she can’t even be considered as ministerial material?

    Could her achievements in public life fit into this box [] ?

  24. 24
    Guardianistas and Beeboids living in exclusive areas of North London says:

    Oh yah!! Rah-thur!!! – it’s all organic innit?

  25. 25
    FatBot also says:

    me ass am de best bit ob me – an’ needs lotsa feedin’

  26. 26
    Penfold says:

    Get rid of the lobby, a cosy little club that has failed to reveal many peccadilloes of MP’s, such as Kennedy’s drink problem.
    It is antiquated and fails to act in the public interest.
    Kick the blighters out of Westminster.

  27. 27
    Anonymous says:

    Ok, so this was a completely uninteresting story about the lobby, buy do Guido the decency of staying on message for at least the first post.

  28. 28
    I don't need no doctor says:

    Hitting the black community hardest……but not you racist bunter Abbott. Instead of sending your offspring to private school, why don’t you donate the money to one of the hardest hit families. In fact how much of the money that you scrounge from the tax payer goes to these families?

  29. 29
    Engineer says:

    + many. One of very few journalists prepared to actually research before writing, it would seem.

  30. 30
    A Pedant says:

    Light years measure distance. I assume you are trying to express a measure of time – if so I think you are stuck with years plus “lots of”, “many” or some some other descriptor of quantity.

  31. 31
    Engineer says:

    Never mind lobby bitch-fights. Are we finally accepting that wind power won’t answer the problem of powering Britain, or not?

  32. 32
    Broadsword calling Danny Boy says:

    At least stop them getting food and booze subsidised at our expense!

  33. 33
    Greg Mulholland says:

    My task for the next year is to get my expenses over the £200,000.00 mark, I intend to be very conscientious.

    Thank you to the good people of Leeds.

  34. 34
    Windy Miller says:

    But it’s a lovely little earner.

  35. 35
    A British Citizen says:

    What is the black community?

    There is nothing on my council tax bill which mentions a black community.

  36. 36
    Dave Cam the Wind Farm Man says:

    You’re not kidding. Build a windmill and the wonga just keeps rolling in.

  37. 37
    I don't need no doctor says:

    Cynical labour bandwagon.

  38. 38
    Corrections says:

    Tea Towels and Towel Heads – please!

  39. 39
    Raving Green Nutter says:

    This Booker fellow is some kind of extremist, no doubt funded by big oil, the Koch brothers and powerful coal lobbyist’s.

    CO2 is a toxic poison that is KILLING THE PLANET! CO2 is causing tsunamis, violent earthquakes, killing polar bears, volcanic eruptions and huge storms. If something isn’t done about we are ALL GOING TO DIE! Booker and Delingpole should be locked up FOR CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY! etc, etc, etc…….

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Justine Thornton says:

    Outrageous. They should follow my example and play fair. I got a job representing the Labour run Welsh government based purely on my experience and talent. It has nothing to do with the fact I’m married to the leader of the Labour party. Just as Jack Dromey being married to the Deputy Leader of the Labour party had nothing to do with him coming first in an all-women shortlist.

  42. 42
    Business Secretary & Confused. says:


  43. 43
    Elitist Green Tosser says:

    Industrialise the countryside!

    But not the south of France, Tuscany or the West Indies as that’s where we have our holiday homes and we don’t want the area spoiled by ghastly turbines everwhere.

  44. 44
    The Truth says:

    Of course she is, its in her interests as one of the self appointed “leaders” of the “black community” to perpetuate a kind of aparthide as her entire power base depends on this “us and them” scenario. Woe betide anyone from the “black community” who does not tow the party line. To people like Abbott integration is anathema.

  45. 45
    The Mysterious Oliver Letwin says:

    As long as it deflects attention away from me I’m quite happy.

    Oh and you ain’t seen me,right?

  46. 46
    Greg Mulholland says:

    Yes its outrageous!

  47. 47
    Anonymous says:

    Engineer, it has nothing to do with technology.

    It is a created vehicle for the redistribution of the wealth to the rich.

    Who else has enough room to put up these low tech disasters? Look up “The Great leap forward” and see how we are mirroring the failures and belief based ideas.

    Who got rich and who starved?

  48. 48
    Anonymous says:

    Sure is;thus disproving the commonly held view that only white people can be racists.

  49. 49
    Who gives . says:

    Is this the same “Lobby” who took the Liebour shilling and refused to report on the utter devestation being wrecked By Brown and co. My heart bleeds purple pish for them !

  50. 50
    Francis Urquhart says:

    Nothing like this has ever happened before! What cheek, pilfering a story someone else wrote! It’s an outrage, I tell you! We can’t allow journalists to actually report something! I’m shocked– SHOCKED!

    (links within story)

    Isn’t it obvious? The story for the Telegraph was embargo’d, whilst the story for the Mail wasn’t, and the Telegraph jumped the gun and printed the fax/e-mail they received from the Minister’s office due to be “released publicly” later on. So long as the Telegraph hadn’t used any quotes, what happened would be no different to a game that’s played all the time, called “Managing the Press,” in which you give one chip wrapper the beat but you make sure the story is more widely known and able to be commented upon, but not by the Minister, who “couldn’t possibly comment” till the official release. Talk about that, Guido.

  51. 51
    Anonymous says:

    Don’t panic,DON’T PANIC,DON’T PANIC.

  52. 52
    Anonymous says:

    Is that a typo Bill? Did you intend to type “tainted”?

  53. 53
    Anonymous says:

    Tidal power would be a better proposition from both the economics & reliability aspects Engineer.

  54. 54
    JH2 says:

    Well if that’s true Diane, it must be because the ‘black community’ is the more dependent on the local authority than other races.

    Why is that? Maybe if that imbalance were solved, the issue you raise would be solved in turn?

  55. 55
    Engineer says:

    ‘Fraid not. It has the same limitations as wind. It’s maximum output does not necessarily coincide with maximum demand, and it’s very low energy density means you need huge capital investment for a modest output.

    Wind, tidal, wave, micro-hydro and the like are probably OK as part of a supply network where demand is low and the cost of transmission lines high – such as the Scottish Highlands, for example; as a method of supply to densely populated areas they just can’t supply enough. For these areas of high demand, coal gas and nuclear are the only real viable options we have currently.

  56. 56
    Backwoodsman says:

    Alright, these are the worthless c*nts who knew labour had foisted an unelected madman on us as prime minister, but thought the arcane rules of their self-elected circle jerk, were more important than allerting the public to the Greek tradgedy taking place.
    Will that be sufficiently on-topic ?

  57. 57
    tomisnotaslav says:

    Benedict Brogan’s daily briefing email yesterday morning said Hayes “took an axe to wind farms in a speech last night (to a renewables conference – cute!) without telling his boss Ed Davey”. The Telegraph article doesn’t say it was in a speech – in fact it doesn’t say where they got it. The Mail claims he “told the Daily Mail”.

    Elsewhere it’s been reported that the comments were excised from Hayes’ speech before he gave it. Perhaps both papers got their hands on a copy of the uncensored version?

  58. 58
    Anonymous says:

    Justine,when in a hole stop digging.

  59. 59
    Oy Vey says:

    Lobby or not, it’s just amusing the see the Mail complain about anything being stolen – hypocrites

  60. 60
    Ivan O'pinion says:

    …round her throat – very tightly.

  61. 61
    optional/ says:

    …roun d her thr oat -very tightly.

  62. 62
    optional/ says:

    When was the last time anyone saw a wite face in Acknee?

  63. 63
    optional/ says:

    and ‘in’ the river is definitely the best place for them.

  64. 64
    Ponty Mython says:

    And the second rule is no poofters?

  65. 65
    Ponty Mython says:

    Because St Tone never once told any fibs.

  66. 66
    I'll do it for a fiver each says:

    SO, when do these abominations start to be chopped down – and who is going to get the contract?

  67. 67
    Tim Yeo says:


  68. 68
    here's a thought says:

    as the country is littered with electricity pylons would it not be sensible to put little electricity generating windmills on the top of each one ?

  69. 69
    Fribbin on the ding dang says:

    just downed a litre of cabbage soup. it’s frightfully cheap y’know.

  70. 70
    I don't need no doctor says:

    I’ve seen a white face with acne, will that do?

  71. 71
    Ivor Biggan says:

    I’ve spotted one as well.

  72. 72
    Living in 98 percent white Merseyside says:

    I can see these windmill things out in Liverpool Bay. I think they’re rather fun.

  73. 73
    General Sir Philp Michael Hunt says:

    I know he is American and this blog concentrates on the UK, but surely with the US elections approaching we should say something about Obama and Benghazi?

  74. 74
    Lard Pressclott - Laughing Policeman in waiting says:

    Coming first in an all-women what ?? Phwooooar !

  75. 75
    The LibDemon party says:

    Harness the hot air coming from windbag Ed Davey. ‘ Tackling rising household energy bills. Bwahahahahahahahaha !!!!

  76. 76
    thespecialone says:

    Comment just about sums up Raving Green Nutters all over the world. You all truly believe the utter bollocks that Gore/Mann/Cameron/Huhne/Davey/Monbiot etc etc etc. Meanwhile, they are getting rich on your stupidity.

  77. 77
    thespecialone says:

    I had a job at a soup kitchen but got sacked when I said towards the end of my shift “Come on you lot hurry up. Haven’t you got homes to go to?”

  78. 78
    Derron Brown says:

    I am genetically fucked up mong.

  79. 79
    Derron Brown says:

    I have been beaten genius dwarf and I can’t handle it!

  80. 80
    Dodgy Geezer says:

    Storing lots of electrical charge in your car, or at a wind turbine plant is so green, these days. And what could possibly go wrong?

    Here are a set of Fisker Karma Hybrids parked in New York during the latest storm. They were caught in the floods. You can see that the petrol cars nearby are probably going to need a bit of a clean up. But the hybrids won’t.

    Because they caught fire and exploded….

Media Reader

Page 3 and the Art of the Self-Pity Statement | Guardian
Here is What a 7 Way Debate Sounds Like | BBC
Poll: Sun Readers Want Page 3 to Stay | Business Insider
The Sun: An Apology | Press Gazette
More Women Prosecuted For Telly Tax | Mail
Je Suis Page 3 | Toby Young
Page 3 Website Enjoys Huge Surge in Traffic | Media Guardian
No One Was Ever Forced to Read Page 3 | Will Walter
Why is Roy Greenslade Doing Labour’s Dirty Work? | Peter Oborne
Today’s Actual Sun Page 3 | Media Guido
Has the Sun Scrapped Page 3? | Guardian

Find out more about PLMR AD-MS

George Galloway says of his former Respect candidate the UKIP MEP turned Tory, Amjad Bashir…

“Clearly Bashir does not have any real political principles or commitment, only naked opportunism and self-interest. He represents the revolving door principle in politics. The Tories are welcome to him because he will cause them embarrassment. Fortunately Respect was able to act before he did it to us.”

Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:


AddThis Feed Button

Guido Reads

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,716 other followers