Prezza Conspiracy Theory Debunked

Back in July John Prescott claimed he was the victim of an elaborate plot by the Tories to smear him over dodgy government credit card purchases. Central to Prezza’s conspiracy theory was a redacted letter from Gus O’Donnell, with Hull’s next top copper demanding an investigation into the apparent cover-up. The story was run by Political Scrapbook, and even the Observer weighed in. Now there is egg-on-face all round as the whole theory was debunked this morning, with an answer to Prezza’s Parliamentary Question in the Lords revealing the letter in question was censored simply to redact factual errors:

“A factual error in the Cabinet Office reply of 18 November 2011, incorrectly suggesting that departmental civil servants had been disciplined for the use of the Government Procurement Card under the previous Administration, was removed from the version of 21 November. In fact, the fraud stemmed from seven transactions on a cloned credit card. A second paragraph was also deleted from the version of 18 November in error. The Cabinet Secretary has written to the noble Lord to explain the background.”

Prezza can take off his tin foil hat…




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Quote of the Day

John Curtice on fiscal policy:

“Attitudes to taxation and spending are basically counter-cyclical. If a government comes in and tries to reduce spending and taxation, after a while people will get worried about the state of public services. If a government increases taxation and public spending, after a while they’ll get concerned about increasing taxation…. In as much as there are lots of ideologues out there who think the state should be this proportion of GDP, they’re all wrong. Because the public’s view is counter-cyclical to the recent experience. It’s basically impossible to satisfy the public.”

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