June 5th, 2014

Cabinet Office Covers Up Clegg’s Secret Farage Briefings

Readers will remember back in March when Guido broke the story that Nick Clegg had been accused of using civil service resources to prepare for his debates with Nigel Farage. At the time sources familiar with the situation reported that Clegg’s taxpayer funded preparation had strayed into party political territory. This would be a clear breach of the Ministerial Code of Conduct, which says any briefings received by ministers must be non-partisan. In the debates Clegg appeared as Leader of the Liberal Democrats…

In search for the truth, Guido requested a copy of Clegg’s preparation for the debates from the Cabinet Office under the Freedom of Information Act. Today, after some delay, the Cabinet Office have confirmed that they do possess the briefings Clegg received, but are refusing to release them despite admitting there is a public interest in doing so:

“There is a general public interest in disclosure of information and I recognise that openness in government may increase public trust in and engagement with the Government. However, these public interests have to be weighed against a stronger public interest of the workings of a private office.”

Clegg has the opportunity to clear his name and prove he did not use civil service resources on party political activity. If he is innocent, there is no loss to him or the Cabinet Office by releasing non-partisan briefing papers. For some reason however, they are not doing so. Those more cynical than Guido might suggest they have something to hide…


108 Comments

  1. 1
    C.O.Jones says:

    Of course they have something to hide. They are present day politicians.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 7
      Gerry Mandering says:

      Well it’s going to be a surprise later when the Newark result is in.

      Vote UKIP

      Liked by 2 people

    • 16
      Morgan's Organ says:

      The Cabinet Office & all Whitehall mandarins are laughing in the faces of the electorate. They will protect their Brussels Valhalah to the death.

      Like

      • 45
        Reichsorganisationsleiter Rumpy von Pumpy unt Reichsorganisationsleiter Jean-Claude von Stuka says:

        Zer EUSSR Reichstag vill use any tool to ensure zer survival of zer fittest unt zer best puppeten vee hav!!!

        Zo silence!! . . . vee hav yor names!!!

        Like

      • 55
        GB2015 says:

        Ok by me, when can we start killing them?

        Like

    • 20
      They trear us with contempt says:

      Of course the cabinet office is hiding the inconvenient truth. They would release the papers else.

      Yet more LibLabCon trickery and contempt

      Liked by 1 person

      • 53
        Chuck 'em out says:

        If civil servants have behaved badly or, even worse illegally, they should be removed from the public payroll. Any time before Friday will do.

        Like

    • 30
      Back to basics says:

      Super injunctions we cannot be trusted to even know exist

      Suppression of Chilcott information on illegal (in both jurisdictions) warmongering that we cannot be trusted to see.

      Terrorist trials that we cannot be trusted to know the contents of

      Judge led inquiries that exonerate PMs.

      An EU who’s response to unhappiness isn’t less of change direction. Just MORE of the same and more swiftly

      plus this and more besides.

      Our leaders really are a most unpleasant elite. And no election of the current contenders will change that one iota

      Liked by 1 person

      • 54
        Chuck 'em out says:

        Cameron should demand the immediate resignations of the top four civil servants in each department – sans pensions.

        Pour encourager les autres, of course.

        Like

        • 71
          Madam La Guillotine says:

          They know where his bodies are buried. The prospect of removing a Premier Division Civil Servant are as likely as persuading Angela to endorse the appointment of the Sacred Norman to President of The European Commission. The only way is to remove their Life Support system as provided by the Premier Division of Politicians.
          In fact, nothing short of another Peasants’ Revolt followed by the execution of the whole political class a la French treatment of their Aristocracy could change things for the better.

          Like

      • 66
        Flaming Torches R Us says:

        Don’t forget that other little matter currently under a 100 year padlock.

        Like

        • 91
          Anonymous says:

          You mean the stuff about events in a certain Scottish town at the north end of the M9?

          Like

    • 49
      The Growler says:

      Fawkesy, Cleggie is already a dead man walking he will lose his seat, the LimpyDems are going to be just a rump of a parliamentary party after the GE, and importantly Cleggie, by most opinions lost the Fridge debate, so was Cleggie given duff info for the debate? At least Cleggie did not bottle out of the debate like Milli and Dave, known as the Great.

      Like

      • 58
        Fred the pensioner says:

        Since the vast majority of today’s senior civil servants were the early victims of Shirley Williams, I suspect you may well be right.

        Like

      • 76
        Jack Ketch. says:

        It will be worth noting how often Clegg has “urgent meetings” with notable figures in the EU mafia over the next ten months. I cannot see any juicy jobs being available in the private sector, possible a vacancy as Ambassador to The Democratic People’s Republic of Scotland would have arisen by May 2015.

        Like

        • 85
          Is there anyone dafter than thicko Clegg? says:

          We need a lollipop lady in our village.
          Oh, don’t apply Nick. You are an absolute car crash in your own right.

          Like

    • 79

      ” However, these public interests have to be weighed against a stronger public interest of the workings of a private office.”

      In other words as I stated so e days ago on a similar matter the mandarins are saying

      Fcuk the FOI — it s WE who decide what or whether the plebeiretariat see !

      Like

  2. 2
    HenryV says:

    What a surprise, not.

    Like

    • 68
      Calculating C*nt says:

      Nick Clegg is not the person he tries to portray to the public.

      Like

      • 72
        Does your dog bite? says:

        Not another tranny.

        Like

      • 78
        Jack Ketch. says:

        I can’t help thinking that he is a Westminster version of actor, Huge Grant–you know, that flustered, I’m-so-honest-and-really-decent (brush hair) act up front and a selfish little louche twister up the back.
        Sorry, I mean in private.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. 3
    himindoors says:

    Seeing how badly prepared he was, perhaps not a bad thing? Let the snake eat it’s own tail

    Like

  4. 4
    Lord Mandarin of Satsuma Hall says:

    Aha, an establishment cover-up. Nothing to see, move along.

    Why not take this paid junket to the Malta Hilton instead of causing trouble? There’s a good boy.

    Like

  5. 5
    kebabmon says:

    What next secret courts?

    Like

  6. 6
    Paddy Power Politics says:

    Like

  7. 8
    Grammar School Boy says:

    Er, oops, Calamity Clegg caught out yet again……

    Like

  8. 9
    a non says:

    Says a lot about the Civil Service and consequently Clegg’s failure.

    Like

  9. 10
    Barry the driver says:

    Fuck em all

    Like

  10. 11
    Phil S says:

    There must be a conflict. Civil Service resources must have been used. If they admit there are papers they must be government and not Lib Dem otherwise they would not be subject to FOI.

    Like

  11. 12
    Care to Comment Mrs Abbott? says:

    Like

    • 27
      Diana Abbott says:

      Obviously writ by some honkie us bluds cant spel

      Like

      • 52
        Dat woomn ob kulla, she says:

        dem whitey am de scum – an’ de wraysus . . . gib me de Kentucky Minstrels any day ob de week

        an’ don yous forget me done got de bootywave!

        Like

    • 35
      JH32624524523432 says:

      May as well be on a sign at Dover.

      Imagine the fucking palava, the puke-making ‘soul searching’, if someone sprayed ‘Blácks not welcome’ somewhere.

      Pavements are institutionally raciss, etc.

      Like

    • 60
      Flaming Torches R Us says:

      The best people to investigate this calumny is obviously members of the Black Police Association.

      Like

  12. 13
    Anonymous says:

    Ministerial Code of Conduct breaches please include Gideon and Justine Green weekend excursion to the bilderbergers too

    Like

  13. 14
    Bus Pass Elvis Party says:

    Like

  14. 15
    Anon says:

    Ministerial Code of Conduct breaches please include Gideon and Justine Green weekend excursion to the bilderbergers too

    Like

  15. 17
    Bus P@ss Elvis P@rty says:

    Like

  16. 18
    Bus P@ss Elvis P@rty to beat LibDems says:

    Like

  17. 19
    Purple Dogzzz says:

    Like

  18. 21
    Irritable Sod says:

    Guido and co

    Keep up the good work of frightening the bejasus out of all politicians!

    Liked by 1 person

    • 106
      carlo gambino says:

      Unlike the BBC’s 4,000 journalists.

      Sorry, should read…

      Unlike the BBC’s 4,000 ‘journalists”.

      Like

  19. 22
    Frank Keefe says:

    Cmon get of Cleggs back the man is as innocent as a Fox with chicken feathers stickng out of his mouth

    Like

  20. 23
    Rinka says:

    Woof Woof

    Like

  21. 24
    Nicked Legg says:

    I fear that UKIP have infiltrated Calamity’s private office, since the briefings they gave him were clearly disinformation:

    Sir Humphrey Stumblebum: ‘I say, DPM, why don’t you talk to this Farage fella about W.G. Grace playing for England…that’ll fox him’.

    Martin Licksemen CBE: ‘Or you could say that anyone voting UKIP is unpatriotic..’

    Clegg: ‘But I’m not a patriot..’

    Licksemen: ‘Of course’s you are not…nor are we…did I ever tell you how much I fancy you?

    Like

  22. 25
    Alex Salmond says:

    Clegg was relying on tractor stats provided by the civil service?
    No wonder he lost the debate.

    Like

  23. 26
    Up yer juncker says:

    Perhaps the flaws and weaknesses in the pro-EU case contained in the briefing notes prevent disclosure?

    Like

  24. 28
    Rickytshirt says:

    In what sense is the civil service private? We paid for these briefings, they should be made public.

    “However, these public interests have to be weighed against a stronger public interest of the workings of a private office.”

    This sentence doesn’t even make any sense to me. What does “public interest of the workings of a private office” mean??? I think the Cabinet Office should be pressed to give a more detailed response as to how they reached this decision.

    Like

  25. 31
    Fail says:

    The twat who told Clegg that only 7% of our laws were now made in Brussels needs sacking for incompetence.

    Like

  26. 32
    Bishop, David Laurence - Bus-Pass Elvis Party says:

    The guy in front me at a polling booth in Newark just farted. In front of a disgruntled, captive audience. Well played, sir.

    Like

    • 39
      Nick Clegg says:

      Voters Go To Polls In Newark By-Election. Difficult to choose between Bus Pass Elvis or Monster Raving Looney here.

      http://news.sky.com/story/1275709/voters-go-to-polls-in-newark-by-election

      Like

      • 61
        Flaming Torches R Us says:

        Judging by the blanket ignoring of this election by both Sky and BBC, I am beginning to wonder if we all have the right day?

        Like

      • 97
        Jethro says:

        37 Tantalisingly, you tell us ‘well played’, but you don’t tell us what he played (apart, obvieusement, from ‘le piano des pauvres’): was it ‘The Ride of The Valkyries’? William Tell? ‘Sunrise’? The Toccata from Widor’s vth. Symphonie? ‘Air on a G-string’, perhaps? I only ask because… …

        There was a young man from Pendeen,
        Who tried to fart ‘God save the Queen';
        When he got to ‘victorious
        Happy, and glorious’,
        His pants were not fit to be seen.

        Like

    • 67
      50 calories per sniff says:

      That’s called negative inflation in the EU.

      Like

    • 90
      Anonymous says:

      Could have been worse, he could have followed through and had to spoil his ballot paper.

      Like

  27. 33
    Mr Bingly says:

    EURO @ 1.24

    KEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRCHING

    Like

  28. 37
    pissed off voter says:

    Clegg? Innocent? lol

    Like

  29. 38
    • 62
      Flaming Torches R Us says:

      Been waiting in vain for that regular poster of the phrase “one up the bum, no harm done”. Has he buggered off to Malta for the week?

      Like

  30. 40
    Joe Public who will continue to Vote for UKIP ORG at May 2015 GE says:

    Aaaahh fancy that EUSSR Cloggy being shy & reluctant to reveal his
    mendacious manipulative behaviour for all to see……

    Never mind EUSSR Cloggy this last century fcuking dinosaur is
    due to be culled in public on Thursday 7 May 2015, the only
    question how many more of these parasites, pimps & leeches
    aka MPs will suffer the same fate (+650 would be great) as they
    all scramble around trying to defend there solid gold luxury
    debauch life styles & of course fully funded by the ignored
    Tax Payers………

    Like

  31. 41
    Dan Hodges says:

    Nick Clegg won the debates!

    Like

    • 43
      Like this says:

      Liked by 1 person

      • 47
        Dan Hodges Cat says:

        Oi Dan isn’t an arsehole he’s a C*nt

        Liked by 1 person

      • 64
        Flaming Torches R Us says:

        Can we have an extra half point for Owen?

        Like

        • 80
          Jack Ketch. says:

          Jones is not a Journalist. He is a left-wing agitator who writes political doggerel in various newspapers. He does not report facts or even other people’s version of facts or make comparisons between different points of view, he is nothing more than a amateur PRO.

          Like

  32. 42
    Clegg lost before the debate started says:

    The EU construct keeping peace in Europe is a lie easily disproved.

    There is not one law or piece of legislation which has come out of Brussels which our own parliament couldn’t have introduced if it so wished.
    And the economic case for being in the EU is not all beer and skittles either.

    Be honest the EU construct is a 20th century solution to a mainland Europe 20th century problem.
    It’s the Europhiles who are stuck in the past.

    Like

    • 93
      sasson says:

      sadly its worse than that. its more of a 1950’s solution to an 1860’s problem (french fear of a united Germany out producing them)

      Like

  33. 44
    Red on Red says:

    Like

    • 51
      Dan Hodges Cat says:

      Dan has signed photo’s of Blair stuck inside his jazz mags so when he gets caught wanking over them people think it’s soapy tits he’s looking at.

      Liked by 1 person

  34. 46
    I wonder if she takes it up the jacksy? says:

    Me too!

    Like

    • 63
      Quean's Peach says:

      ‘Ello me old fruit!

      Like

    • 74
      No 6 says:

      Gawd, it reminds me of a sixth form debating society where the most obnoxious students reign supreme, without any sense of just how absurd they are (mind you, that Isabel, ding dong).

      Like

    • 105
      NE Frontiersman says:

      Please help me: is this a spoof? I just can’t tell. A regulator to protect us from regulators is mad enough to be true, but these nerds can’t be real…can they?

      Like

    • 107
      Alas, Poor Albion says:

      Who are these kids? What are they doing on TV? Who cares? Anymore?

      Like

  35. 48
    Joe Public who will continue to Vote for UKIP ORG at May 2015 GE says:

    Think I will pass on that & have a large dump instead !!

    much more satisfying than viewing this crowd of t*ssers

    with Dumbleweed being his usual biased self……

    & of course they will all be trying to out do one & other

    in there smearing of UKIP………..

    as they all sit there smelling of Kake awaiting the by-election

    result……

    Like

    • 82

      Mind you the bank of Mum and Dad must have money …one of them is actually sitting on a Chesterfield sofa .

      And you don t see many of them outside of St James’ clubland and the Cotswolds .

      Like

  36. 50
    Anonymous says:

    Don’t forget the hand picked audience of lefty activists posing as ordinary members of the public.

    Like

    • 56
      The Biased Bullshit Corpse says:

      Hand-on-heart . . . we never ever hand pick the audience! – we just take people as they come – don’t we boys and girls?

      Like

  37. 57
    John Bellingham says:

    Never heard of any of them. Are they world famous in Shepherd’s Bush?

    Like

  38. 65
    Vince says:

    Surely I was not involved in any plot today. Was I?

    Like

    • 99
      Jethro - in the Cable Locker says:

      63 … All you’ve got to remember, is that you not only have no recollection of that Titus Oates, but never met him, or tem, as the case may be.
      Now, say after me, ‘I have no recollection of that Titus Oates…’ … … …

      Like

  39. 70
    Anonymous says:

    Next time Nick, bin the briefing notes and ask for `idiot boards`!

    Like

  40. 73
    Pub Landlord says:

    Are the Lib/Dims an out and out comedy party?! Again it’s only Scameron whose keeping Smegg from total oblivion.

    Like

  41. 84
    Did someone have to read the briefing to Cleggy? says:

    But Nick has only just finished ‘Janet and John 2′ hasn’t he?

    Like

  42. 92
    Anonymous says:

    Was always obvious without looking at the byline who wrote this piece – was never going to be Boris’s brown haired love child who was unfortunate enough to get the looks but not the brains.

    Like

  43. 94
    BBC executive says:

    Look out for our in depth news night investigation on this!

    Like

  44. 95
    gildedtumbril says:

    The lying bastards have all got something to hide and always do.

    Like

  45. 102
    ron Vibbentrop says:

    Can’t wait for Putin to get here and shoot the lot of them.

    Like

  46. 103
    SIZE 15 CARBON FOOTPRINT says:

    So despite hours of briefings and coaching Farage still easily made him look the c-unt he is, priceless!

    Like

  47. 108
    John Tandy says:

    Yet more dishonesty from Westminster……

    Like


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