Will Chris Huhne Go the Way of Bertie Ahern?

Grainne Carruth was Bertie Ahern’s secretary, the Irish PM had been dogged by corruption scandals and allegations that he had for many years been taking bribes from property tycoons. Nothing ever stuck to him, investigations and tribunals were overcome. He became known as the “Teflon Taoiseach”.

The press suspected he was guilty of more than just sharp practice, but the voters tolerated it as the economy bubbled. That was until his secretary under cross-examination had a nightmare time in the witness box as bank records were produced to contradict her sworn evidence that she had not lodged cash for Mr Ahern while serving as his constituency assistant. She had earlier supported Ahern’s testimony, when confronted with bank records which flatly contradicted him she broke down in tears saying plaintively: “I just want to go home.”

The widespread suspicion that Ahern had something to hide, and had sent in an employee to carry the can for him, led to a surge of public feeling against him. He was finished, Irish voters would tolerate a politician who was a bit “cute”, but not a bastard who would put his constituency assistant on the stand to lie for him. Something for Chris Huhne to reflect on…

Seen Elsewhere

Tip offs: 020 7193 4041

Quote of the Day

Peter Mandelson tells Emma Barnett…

“I think that Jeremy Corbyn himself should search his conscience and ask himself whether he’s the best person to lead the Labour Party into the general election with the best chance of success for the party.”


Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.