This morning’s Telegraph splash about “cash for access” is a little over-hyped. These conference 30-second-hand-shake gigs are nothing new and something both major parties have been guilty of for years. Party funding is a mess and throwing rocks in either direction is a waste of time without a comprehensive overhaul of the whole system. They sound dreadful too. You couldn’t get Guido to go if you paid him £1,000…
For what it’s worth though, paying a £1,000 to sit next to a Government Minister makes a lot more sense than paying £1,521.62 for breakfast and a drinks reception with some washed up Labour Shadow Ministers, as advertised for this year’s conference.
Guido can’t really see any point, other than being close enough to punch one of them.
UPDATE: Sky’s newish politico Rachel Younger points out that for “£40 you can dine with Business Secretary Vince Cable at the Quay Hotel in Deganwy. The fundraising dinner held by the North Wales Liberal Democrats takes place on the 30th of October and in these penny-pinching times it sounds like a bargain to me.” Shudder.