We do have broadband and will be checking in daily, but things will be at an easy pace. Comment moderation and Guido’s sunglasses are on.
He angrily described the team around Cameron as “twats”.
He said that he had sent his critical article to Cameron, Coulson and Hilton last week. On Thursday Cameron called him directly and pleaded with him not to publish it. Cameron was the one who suggested Miraj come in and see him at his Commons office on Monday.
During the meeting “we discussed ways I could help”. Cameron did not concede any of the criticisms in the original article, but merely defended his position with “flim flam”.
Guido put it to him repeatedly that it was true he had suggested making him a Lord, he did not deny the claim as made by Cameron, flannelling that he wasn’t going to discuss a private conversation, even though we were discussing just that.
Then the discussion took a very interesting turn, he was very critical and animated about the Sayeeda Warsi peerage. Comparing his decade long support and work for the party to her more recent support. The tone was “why her, and not me?”. This was very revealing, his ambition and impatience has previously boiled over at the promotion of Asian women. In the previous case it was about Priti Patel. He is at 32 a man in a hurry with a high opinion of himself. He feels strongly that having been an early supporter of Cameron he deserved special treatment. Now he has got it, kicked off the A-list…
Guido has taken soundings and now believes that the best course of action is to form a special purpose vehicle to instruct a legal team and take this further. It also seems wise to first allow the Public Administration Select Committee to conduct its investigation when MPs return after the recess. They will hold evidence sessions after Parliament returns from its summer recess, and report by the end of the year.
Tony Wright plans to call Assistant Commissioner John Yates as a witness. It will be particularly interesting to see what evidence comes out at that time. Meantime if you want to be involved in the formation of a vehicle to bring a prosecution or have relevant legal experience and knowledge, email Guido.
The Courts come to a halt and the political class will be on holiday for the next month. Guido will be in touch with pledge makers with more details in due course.
(Yes, it is a slow news day).
My favourite blog overall is probably Mike Smithson’s Political Betting.
Yet again it falls to Guido to get the important news: Gordon Brown banged his head against the door frame as he boarded the Presidential helicopter. Perhaps he misunderstood and was over-excited to be on his way to see Camp David?
Billions spent on the BBC news gathering operation and they miss the big story again.
Ed Miliband, the Cabinet Office minister and frequent attendee of Smith Institute events at 11 Downing Street in the past, now reckons “Charities should be free to participate in appropriate ways in political activities. There are clear benefits to society from allowing charities to do so.”
Guido is in favour of such a change in the law, but the Charity Commission’s Smith Institute investigation should still reach a prompt conclusion. Gordon Brown was the sole beneficiary of a charity which broke the law continuously for five years and acted as a campaign slush fund for him. Nobody is above the law.
The Charity Commission needs to ascertain, in good time, whether or not taxpayers money was diverted to furthering Gordon Brown’s private interests.
Mandela was Christ-Like | Peter Oborne
Maggie Personally Donated £20,000 to Mandela Foundation | Bono
Why Environmentalists Should Favour Fracking | CPS
Balls Gag Falls Flat | Asa Bennett
Mandela the Thatcherite | John Pilger
Balls’ Heckling Hypocrisy | Isabel Hardman
Gordon Dinner Raises Just $350 | Trending Central
Labour Need Darling to Replace Balls | Peter Oborne
Osborne Will Have to Push Harder Than This | Fraser Nelson
No, Cameron Did Not Make Hang Mandela Posters | Buzzfeed
Guido’s Shadow Chancellor Runners and Riders | Paddy Power
Nelson Mandela on Margaret Thatcher, July 1990…
“She is an enemy of apartheid… We have much to thank her for.”