iYes Minister

Guido understands that an announcement tomorrow will say that CCHQ digital media guru and former parliamentary candidate, Rishi Saha has been made a civil servant running a to-be-merged Downing Street and Cabinet Office online team as Deputy Director of Communications. Rishi, a close ally of Steve Hilton, was the coordinator of the Tory’s successful digital campaign and will continue his work online without his blue hat on. Rishi first came into the limelight with the “Pimp My Party” website.

Given that pre-election the Tories announced they would be cutting down on the number of political advisers and strategists they would have, shuffling them into the Civil Service seems a cheeky loophole, though Guido understands there isn’t a new job being created, he is replacing a civil servant who has come to the end of her contract. Interesting to note that Mark Flanagan, a Brown-era hire, brought in from the private sector by Stephen Carter, hasn’t been dumped but instead booted upstairs to a “strategic role”…

UPDATE: Saha’s closeness to the Cameron project should not be underestimated, which will make the jump to neutrality interesting. He was there from day one.

Quite literally.





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Quote of the Day

Jo Swinson on Chris Rennard…

“Vince — and Tim before him — have repeatedly, publicly said Rennard is not welcome anywhere near their frontbench team, even as an adviser. I remain deeply frustrated that he was not expelled from the party through its disciplinary process. It just feels wrong, and I do not want Lord Rennard to continue as a member of the party. As far as I am concerned, he is not welcome.”

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