Cabinet Office Covers Up Clegg’s Secret Farage Briefings

Readers will remember back in March when Guido broke the story that Nick Clegg had been accused of using civil service resources to prepare for his debates with Nigel Farage. At the time sources familiar with the situation reported that Clegg’s taxpayer funded preparation had strayed into party political territory. This would be a clear breach of the Ministerial Code of Conduct, which says any briefings received by ministers must be non-partisan. In the debates Clegg appeared as Leader of the Liberal Democrats…

In search for the truth, Guido requested a copy of Clegg’s preparation for the debates from the Cabinet Office under the Freedom of Information Act. Today, after some delay, the Cabinet Office have confirmed that they do possess the briefings Clegg received, but are refusing to release them despite admitting there is a public interest in doing so:

“There is a general public interest in disclosure of information and I recognise that openness in government may increase public trust in and engagement with the Government. However, these public interests have to be weighed against a stronger public interest of the workings of a private office.”

Clegg has the opportunity to clear his name and prove he did not use civil service resources on party political activity. If he is innocent, there is no loss to him or the Cabinet Office by releasing non-partisan briefing papers. For some reason however, they are not doing so. Those more cynical than Guido might suggest they have something to hide…




Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

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.”

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.
Sunday Show Highlights Sunday Show Highlights
Royal Mail’s Tweets Deliver Truth About Nationalisation Royal Mail’s Tweets Deliver Truth About Nationalisation
Jez “Doesn’t Do Dinners” Jez “Doesn’t Do Dinners”
New Tory Slogan: Building a Britain Fit for The Future New Tory Slogan: Building a Britain Fit for The Future
Unilad Deleted From Facebook Unilad Deleted From Facebook
Disgraced Gay Times Editor Is Labour Member Disgraced Gay Times Editor Is Labour Member
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: “I’d Rather Be Mugabe Than May” Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: “I’d Rather Be Mugabe Than May”
Corbynista Rulebook Saves Lansman’s NEC Dream Corbynista Rulebook Saves Lansman’s NEC Dream
70 Million Reasons BuzzFeed Won’t Go Public 70 Million Reasons BuzzFeed Won’t Go Public
Sun Coffee Run to Broadcasting House Sun Coffee Run to Broadcasting House
Teething Problems for Salmond’s RT Show Teething Problems for Salmond’s RT Show
Hammond to Deliver “Real Action” on Housing in Budget Hammond to Deliver “Real Action” on Housing in Budget
Dods Shard Offices Infested With Maggots Dods Shard Offices Infested With Maggots
Nelson’s Back Nelson’s Back
Nasreen Khan Resigns Nasreen Khan Resigns
Young Liberals Condemn Cable For Defending Rennard Young Liberals Condemn Cable For Defending Rennard
Brexodus Was Bogus Brexodus Was Bogus
McDonnell Now Sure There Won’t Be a Run on The Pound McDonnell Now Sure There Won’t Be a Run on The Pound
Shadow Minister: “I Don’t Know” Why Corbyn Hasn’t Suspended Dent Coad Shadow Minister: “I Don’t Know” Why Corbyn Hasn’t Suspended Dent Coad
Byline Outs Russian Troll But It’s a Security Guard from Glasgow Byline Outs Russian Troll But It’s a Security Guard from Glasgow