As Tory flutters begin to subside, the race to become the next Prime Minister’s Spokesman is hotting up. Given that the Tories have hinted at American-style televised lobby briefings to open up politics, someone with a pretty face as well as a way with words is needed. Andy Coulson is being deliberately sketchy about whether he will go to Downing Street or return to the Murdoch fold, if he does stay he will be wanting to be the person telling the spokesman what to say. Cameron’s current spinner Gabby Bertin is said to have her eye on the job and apparently gets rather grumpy when people discuss other contenders, though there is no doubt that candidates are emerging. Henry McCrory shouldn’t be ruled out completely either.
The BBC’s James Landale, a fellow Old Etonian, has publicly denied he is interested in the job but his name keeps popping up. He was tipped for promotion at the BBC but Guido understands he privately hints he might be off elsewhere. Talking of leaving the BBC, Boris’s man Guto Hari has been mentioned, he was supposedly first offered the job which Coulson eventually took, but is very loyal to the prince-across-the-water. Ian Birrell, the former deputy-editor of The Indy is apparently rather close to Cameron and another mooted candidate. Julia Hartley-Brewer of the Sunday Express is an outside bet. Prize for most obvious brown-nosing (of late) has to go to The Telegraph’s Ben Brogan though, wired into CCHQ he has certainly written some pleasantly glowing pieces in recent weeks, one of the few journalists to refrain from having too much of a dig during the recent wobbles. His loyalty to Team Cameron when they were under fire will not have gone unnoticed…
UPDATE : When Guido was preparing the graphic above he eventually gave up on finding a picture of Gabby Bertin, Cameron’s seemingly very elusive Press Secretary. She is clearly quite good at her job as it took a good six hours for one to finally turn up. Sadly it is not the famed karaoke snap apparently out there.
It’s a rare moment any way.